Supporting and working with women, children and young people since 1981
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Your Rights

Your  right to be protected by the Police

  1. Any woman is entitled to police assistance if she is being assaulted.
  2. Assaults which occur between partners in the home are not in any way less serious than those which occur between strangers.
  3. Assault within the context of domestic abuse is a crime; it should be dealt with in the same way as any other crime
  4. There are guidelines laid down for the police on how they should respond to being called to an assault on a woman by the person she is living with.
  5. It is misleading for the police to ask you if you want to have your partner charged - it is for the police to decide whether to charge him or not, it is however your decision as to whether or not you make a statement as a witness

Your  right to Protection from Continuing Abuse

  1. Any women who is being assaulted, threatened or harassed by an abuser can apply through a lawyer for a court order telling them to stop their behaviour. This is called an interdict. If an interdict may have powers of arrest attached
  2. An order can be granted if you want an abuser to be told to stop assaulting you but do not wish to have them put out of the home. It can also be granted if you are living apart from the abuser and you still need protection from them. For example, the abuser may be prohibited from assaulting and threatening you in your home or anywhere else, or from coming within fifty yards of the family home.
  3. If the abuser breaks an interdict, the response of the police will depend on whether or not a power of arrest is attached to the interdict.
  4. If there is a power of arrest then the police can arrest the abuser if they have reasonable suspicion that the interdict has been broken.
  5. If there is not a power of arrest then the police have no special powers unless the abuser has committed a separate criminal offence at the time. If no criminal offence has been committed, you must go to your lawyer about taking your abuser through the civil courts for 'breach of interdict'.
  6. Under the Matrimonial Homes (Family Protection) (Scotland) Act 1981, and the Protection from Abuse (Scotland) Act 2001, you can apply to the court for a power of arrest to be attached. It is important that you talk to a lawyer about applying for this protection, your local women's aid group can provide you with a list of sympathetic lawyers.

For further information and support call 0141 952 8118