This paper provides an update to a Scottish Government report published in June 2020, which explored the impact of the COVID-19 on people experiencing domestic abuse and other forms of violence against women and girls (VAWG) between 30 March and 22 May 2020 (the period of lockdown).
This paper outlines trends that have been identified from qualitative research on the experience of people experiencing domestic abuse and other forms of VAWG in the subsequent period, between 22 May and 11 August. This period takes into account the movement from lockdown into Phases 1, 2 and 3 in Scotland's route map until the reopening of schools on 11 August. Scotland entered Phase 1 on 28 May; Phase 2 on 19 June; and Phase 3 on 10 July. A Phase Three route map update on 30 July confirmed schools would reopen on 11 August.
The research for this report took place on a weekly basis throughout the period specified. Evidence has been gathered from two primary sources:
- Semi-structured telephone interviews with service managers and practitioners from Scottish statutory and third sector organisations involved in supporting people experiencing or perpetrating domestic abuse or other forms of VAWG; and
- Documentary evidence provided by organisations involved in supporting people experiencing or perpetrating domestic abuse or other forms of VAWG.
The services/organisations that participated in the research have been anonymised. The majority of organisations involved primarily supported female victims of domestic abuse and the majority of incidents referred to involved a female victim and male perpetrator. Where possible, the terminology of "victim" and "perpetrator" has been used throughout the paper in order to maintain the anonymity of the small number of organisations that support all genders of victim.