What you need to know about abuse
What is abuse? Abuse is when someone hurts you or treats you badly. Abuse is always wrong.
It could be;
- Someone is hurting you
- Someone is being nasty to you
- Someone is making you worried or frightened
- Someone is making you sad
- If someone is taking your money
In this leaflet we will look at all the different types of abuse
If you or a friend are worried , there are people you can talk to who can help.
Remember abuse is wrong, you need to tell someone you trust.
National Gender-Based Violence and Health Programme
The National Gender-Based Violence and Health Programme is a 3-year programme of work to improve the identification and management of gender-based violence across NHS Scotland.
The programme commenced in October 2008 with the issue of Gender Based Violence Action Plan to Health Boards. This letter outlined the areas of development required to fulfil the aim of adopting
‘a systems approach to ensure that the NHS in Scotland fully recognises and meets its responsibilities around gender-based violence as a service provider, employer and partner agency.’
NHS Forth Valley has been actively working towards understanding this work to enable us to meet our legislative obligations to promote gender equality as detailed in the Equality Act 2006.
Scottish Government Forced Marriage Campaign
No-one should ever be emotionally or physically forced into marrying someone they do not want to. If you are worried that this might be happening to you or someone you know, support is available.
Remember that this is not your fault and you are not alone. Do not be afraid to speak out.
Being emotionally or physically forced to marry is not only wrong but it is illegal. A campaign to raise awareness of forced marriage and help those at risk is currently running across Scotland.
For information and advice visit yourrightscotland.org or call the free 24-hour helpline on 0800 0271234
NHS Forth Valley Action Plan and Working Group
The objectives of the Action Plan are:
- To improve the healthcare identification of abuse
- To increase the capacity of NHS Forth Valley to respond to abuse
- To develop indicators and establish healthcare outcome measures
- To develop comprehensive standards of care in relation to the different forms of gender-based violence
- To ensure that gender-based violence is integrated into the relevant strategic and planning frameworks
- To ensure That NHS Forth Valley contributes effectively to multi-agency efforts to address abuse
- To be an active member of the Forth Valley Multi Agency Domestic Abuse Steering Group
- To ensure that staff area trained in supporting the needs of people in relation to Gender Based Violence
NHS Forth Valley’s objectives as identified within the Gender Based Violence Action Plan demonstrate the work being taken forward to support the national programme by ensuring the:
- Implementation of ‘Routine Enquiry of Abuse’ within the priority settings (maternity, mental health, substance misuse, emergency medicine, community nursing and sexual health services.)
- Dissemination of revised ‘guidance on abuse for staff’
- Enhance the current NHS Forth Valley employee policy on gender-based violence
- Multi-agency collaboration on gender-based violence particularly in relation to child protection and homelessness.
- NHS Forth Valley: Gender Based Violence Action Plan
- Forth Valley Gender Based Violence Training Programme
Guidance for Health Workers
A series of guides have been produced to support health staff
- What Health Workers Need to Know About Gender-based Violence
- Childhood Sexual Abuse. What health workers need to know
- Commercial Sexual Exploitation. What health workers need to know
- Domestic Abuse. What health workers need to know
- Harmful Traditional Practices. What health workers need to know
- Rape & Sexual Assault. What health workers need to know
- Stalking & Harrassment What health workers need to know
- What health workers need to know about human trafficing
Information for Service Users
The National Team have developed this resource for NHS Boards to adapt for local use.
- Yes You Can! – Working with Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse
- Yes You Can ! Working with Survivors of childhood Sexual Abuse
- Principles of Good Practice for Working with Women Experiencing Domestic Violence Guidance for Mental Health Professionals. (Women’s Aid 2005)
- Kingdom Abuse Survivors Project. (Adult Survivors of Sexual Abuse)
- Against Violence and Abuse
Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)
FGM & THE LAW
FGM is a crime in Scotland and throughout the UK.
In Scotland it is illegal under the Prohibition of Female Genital Mutilation (Scotland) Act 2005. In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, the practice is illegal under the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003.
It is also against the law to take a girl abroad for FGM. A UK national or permanent UK resident is guilty of a crime if they carry out FGM outside Scotland. It is also a crime for a person to assist or arrange the FGM of another person, even if the actual FGM occurs outside Scotland.
To date there have been no prosecutions in Scotland but it is believed that the practice continues in the UK, as well as girls resident in the UK being taken abroad for the purpose of FGM.
Anyone found guilty of an FGM offence, or of aiding and abetting such an offence, faces a penalty of up to 14 years in prison, or a fine, or both.
If you are concerned about a girl at risk of FGM and it is an emergency situation you should dial 999 and ask for the Police. Police Scotland has officers with special responsibility for FGM, and they are available to provide information in non-emergency situations. In this case, call 101, the national non-emergency police number and ask to be put through to the Divisional Public Protection Unit
Further information, research, training materials and information leaflets are available from the enclosed link. This includes Scottish Government guidance in English, Arabic, Somali, French and Swahili.
For more information visit http://www.fgmaware.org/downloads.html
Voice Against Violence
This group was launched on the 1st February 2011. This is a group of eight young experts who have first hand experience of domestic abuse and different services. They work with the Scottish Government and the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (CoSLA) on a Delivery Plan which aims to eradicate domestic abuse from Scotland.
For further details please visit the voice against violence website.
G5Partners: Forth Valley Protocol on Human Trafficking (Including Children and Adults)
This protocol applies to all partner agencies involved in Community Planning
processes across Forth Valley including services not specifically mentioned within
this document and all services should utilise sections on referral mechanisms to front line services.
The purpose of this protocol is to:
- raise awareness of human trafficking within agencies
- raise awareness of indicators of human trafficking for all staff
- support the investigation and prosecution of those who coerce, exploit and abuse people in this way
- facilitate a consistent response and approach to victims of human trafficking across all agencies within Forth Valley
The Ethnic Survivors Forum
The Ethnic Survivors Forum is a new culturally sensitive service available for minority ethnic communities and professional bodies.
The Ethnic Survivors Forum offers support services for minority ethnic adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse.
For further information contact: The Ethnic Survivors Forum
Rape Crisis Scotland
Rape Crisis Scotland (RCS) is the national office for the rape crisis movement in Scotland. They support the work of local centres and develop new centres in areas where there are no or few specialist services. They also work with other agencies such as the police and health services to improve the response to those who are affected by and who perpetrate sexual violence. Through campaigns, briefings and publications they raise awareness of sexual violence as well as challenging attitudes.
They can be contacted on:
Rape Crisis Scotland National Helpline – Phone free any day between 6pm and midnight on 08088 01 03 02 or if you are deaf or hard of hearing on minicom number 0141 353 3091
Information is also available on their web site in a range of languages: www.rapecrisisscotland.org.uk/about/
The list below shows some useful publications both from Rape Crisis Scotland:
- Panic attacks
- Coping after sexual violence
- Nightmares/Sleep problems
- Sexual health
- Healing from sexual violence
- Suicidal thoughts & feelings
16 days of Action
What is 16 Days of Action?
The elimination of violence against women is the subject of international attention for a specific 16-day period every year. The ‘16 Days’ campaign began in 1991 and since then over 2000 organisations in over 150 countries have participated in raising awareness of the issues associated with violence against women.
The campaign begins on 25th November, this is an International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and runs through to 10th December (International Human Rights day) to help people make the link that such violence is a violation of a woman’s human rights
What is the Scottish Government Perspective?
The Scottish Government defines domestic abuse as ‘perpetrated by partners or ex partners [which] can include physical abuse (assault and physical attack involving a range of behaviour), sexual abuse (acts which degrade and humiliate women and are perpetrated against their will, including rape) and mental and emotional abuse (such as threats, verbal abuse, racial abuse, withholding money and other types of controlling behaviour such as isolation from family and friends.
Between one in three and one in five women experience some form of domestic abuse in the course of their lifetime
Over half (53%) of women murdered in Scotland between 1997 and 2007 were killed by a partner or ex-partner
In 54% of rape cases the perpetrator is a current or ex-partner
One in three women experiences sexual abuse along with physical abuse
Over the 16 Days of Action period, a range of Forth Valley agencies, groups and individuals came together to work to end all forms of violence against women.
Local Contact Details
Please see the attached information: Services Available to Help