What is Domestic Abuse?
Domestic abuse can affect anyone. Police Scotland works to a nationally agreed definition of domestic abuse adopted by the Crown Office Procurator Fiscal Service.
'Domestic Abuse is any form of physical, sexual or mental and emotional abuse which might amount to criminal conduct, and which takes place within the context of a relationship'
The relationship will be between partners (married, cohabiting, civil partnership or otherwise) or ex-partners. The abuse can be committed in the home or elsewhere.
Physical - Sexual - Emotional
Physical Domestic Abuse includes:
All types of assault and physical attacks like hitting (including with objects), punching, kicking and burning.
Sexual Domestic Abuse includes:
Forcing you to have sexual intercourse or forcing you to engage in sexual acts.
Mental / Emotional Domestic Abuse includes:
Threats (including threats of violence); criticism and name calling; controlling what you do, where you go and who you speak to (coercive control); threatening your children, isolating you from friends and family; accusing you of being unfaithful; threatening to 'out' your sexual orientation to family, friends or work or to reveal your HIV/AIDS status.
If your Partner is Controlling you it's Domestic Abuse
The law now recognises psychological harm, as well as physical harm, as an offence. From 1st April 2019 the new Domestic Abuse (Scotland) Act 2018 allows the police and courts to charge someone for a single offence of domestic abuse, covering both physical abuse and psychological abuse/controlling and coercive behaviour.
Coercive and controlling behaviour is a pattern of conduct which undermines the victim’s independence and might include restricting mobile phone usage, controlling bank account access, dictating outfit choices, meal times or friendships.
It can happen to anyone in an intimate relationship. You don’t need to live with your partner to experience domestic abuse.
It’s important to talk to someone if you think you are experiencing domestic abuse. If you’re not ready to report it, you can still seek support.
For more information on domestic abuse, how to get help and how to report it visit safer.scot.
If your partner is controlling you it’s domestic abuse. To speak in confidence call Scotland’s Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0800 027 1234
YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE SAFE AND THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO CAN HELP YOU.
In an emergency always call 999
Over 100 cases of domestic abuse take place in Shetland every year, with 115 recorded in 2017-18. There are around 60,000 cases recorded in Scotland annually - that is one every ten minutes. Domestic Abuse affects people across our community regardless of sex, race, age, religion, sexuality, income or lifestyle.