Podcast: Making justice 'worth it' for survivors of domestic abuse

CommonSpace sits down with the experts to learn more about how the criminal justice system works for domestic abuse survivors 

COMMONSPACE JOURNALIST Caitlin Logan sits down with Scottish Women’s Rights Centre solicitor Sarah Crawford, clinical psychologist and domestic abuse expert Dr Mairead Tagg, and SNP councillor Julie McKenzie who was the victim in two domestic abuse cases which saw her former partner convicted.

We ask, is the Scottish justice system working for suvivors of domestic abuse, and what can happen to ensure it does?

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This forms part of CommonSpace’s special investigation into the issue, in which we spoke to four survivors who’ve been through the process, heard from six advocacy and campaign organisations on their views on the areas for reform, and asked the bodies responsible what they’re doing to address these concerns. 

READ MORE: Making justice 'worth it': Domestic abuse survivors say change is needed if victims are to have confidence in the legal system

Specific areas discussed in the podcast include: 

  • The uneven availability of support across Scotland (described as a “postcode lottery”)
     
  • The benefit of legal advice and advocacy services for complainers 
     
  • The trauma experienced during the process 
     
  • New proposals for pre-recording evidence
     
  • The need for a stronger understanding of domestic abuse and its impacts amongst professionals
     
  • Gender balance in the system
     
  • The need for complainers to have their voices heard
     
  • What to expect from the new Domestic Abuse Act 
     
  • And more! 
     

READ MORE: Court process can “cause as much damage” for victims as domestic abuse, say women’s rights advocates

READ MORE: Anonymous: My journey to speaking out on the rape and abuse my partner inflicted

READ MORE: Editorial: Why CommonSpace is backing these 5 reforms to how the courts handle domestic abuse

Picture: CommonSpace

If you have been affected by any of the issues discussed here, contact the Domestic Abuse and Forced Marriage Helpline on 0800 027 1234, the Rape Crisis Helpline on 08088 01 03 02, the Scottish Women’s Rights Centre on 08088 010 789, or find details here of your local Women’s Aid or Rape Crisis Centre

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