Under consideration PE2025: Improve the support available to victims of domestic violence, who have been forced to flee their home

Calling on the Scottish Parliament to urge the Scottish Government to improve the support available to victims of domestic violence who have been forced to flee the marital home by:

  • ensuring access to legal aid for divorce proceedings where domestic violence is a contributing factor;

  • ensuring victims are financially compensated for loss of the marital home, including loss of personal possessions and furniture left in the property; and

  • ensuring that victims are consulted before any changes are made to non-harassment orders.

Previous action taken

I have written to Humza Yousaf, when he was Cabinet Secretary for Justice.
I have also raised the matter with the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service, and our local MP, Carol Monaghan.

Background information

My sister was abducted, beaten and her estranged husband attempted to kill her after threatening the same. He received a custodial sentence for offences including breach of bail, abduction, assault to injury, and breach of the peace, of which he served half. This was after the attempted murder charge was dropped without discussion with the victim. Following his release, he began harassing my sister under an assumed name and the police decided they could do nothing.

The perpetrator’s family emptied the marital home of all furniture, fixtures and fittings, and again the police could do nothing to prevent this. Furthermore, my sister had to pay legal costs to divorce him and start over having left the home with only the clothes and possessions on her person.

My sister has now had to give up work due to anxiety, depression, PTSD and deterioration of physical health, and to date has received no benefits whatsoever. She was declined a community care grant and criminal injuries compensation.

  • Created by Bernadette Foley
  • Considered from 25 April 2023
  • Petitions can collect signatures until the petition has been closed

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