Dundee has recorded the highest level of domestic abuse in Scotland, new figures have revealed.
It comes as domestic abuse rates across Scotland have risen for the fifth consecutive year.
In 2020-21, Dundee City had 177 recorded rates of domestic abuse per 10,000 people, the highest in Scotland and well above the national average of 119.
In Angus, the recorded incident rate was 96 per 10,000, in Perth & Kinross it was 89.
In Fife, the rate was 134, also above the Scottish average.
The police recorded 65,251 incidents of domestic abuse in 2020-21 across Scotland, an increase of 4% compared to the previous year – and the fifth year in a row this figure it has increased.
Detective Chief Superintendent Sam Faulds today said domestic abuse was a “despicable and debilitating” crime where perpetrators used “complex controlling behaviours to frighten, humiliate and isolate victims”.
He vowed the force will continue to use all means at its disposal to tackle the crimes.
A spokeswoman for Dundee Women’s Aid said that domestic abuse is “devastating”, and gave advice on how people can get help.
Dundee’s victims were 80% female, the statistics revealed.
‘Dundee has social issues that don’t help’
Lucie Kapasi, children’s services manager with Dundee Women’s Aid, said: “We are aware Dundee has the highest rate of domestic abuse in Scotland.
“There are a lot of social issues in Dundee that unfortunately don’t help, but it would be wrong to use these issues as an excuse because we know that domestic abuse does not discriminate.”
DWA Support line – 01382 207099
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She added: “It could be argued that services in Dundee have worked really hard to raise awareness of the issue as well as working closely with our colleagues in Police Scotland to make reporting domestic abuse an option for people.
“Of course, the number of women and children experiencing domestic abuse is devastating, because we know and see every day the impact this can have on people’s lives.
“We must continue to raise awareness of the issue and have services available to help families recover and move on with their lives with positive outcomes.”
Multi-agency support is available
Lucie highlighted a number of support services.
Dundee Women’s Aid’s support line on 01382 207 099.
Scotland’s domestic abuse and forced marriage helpline on 0800 027 1234.
Barnardo’s also provides support to families experiencing domestic abuse through their Tayside Domestic Abuse Service (TDAS). For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Dundee Multi Agency Independency Advocacy (MIA) service provides a crisis intervention service to help families to minimise future risks of harm. This can be accessed at email@example.com
Scottish Government advice for men who are experiencing abuse can be accessed at the male victim support page.
Police ‘committed to eradicating domestic abuse’
Detective Chief Superintendent Sam Faulds said: “Tackling domestic abuse is a priority for Police Scotland and we are committed to working with our partners to reduce the harm it causes and ultimately eradicate it.
“Domestic abuse is a despicable and debilitating crime which affects all of our communities and has no respect for ability, age, ethnicity, gender, race, religion or sexual orientation.
“Police Scotland will not tolerate it. Officers will proactively target perpetrators and support victims to prevent domestic abuse from damaging the lives of victims and their families.
“Domestic abuse is not just physical or sexual abuse, it includes abusive behaviours, verbal, sexual, psychological or financial abuse and can be committed anywhere including online.
“It is often about power and control, with abusers seeking to use complex controlling behaviours to frighten, humiliate and isolate victims from those who can offer them support.
“Where Police Scotland receives a report of domestic abuse it will be taken seriously, victims will be listened to and their report thoroughly investigated.”
To read Katy’s story, click here.