News In Focus
Money announced for sex crime victim support services
Funding has been announced to improve forensic medical examinations and other services for victims of rape and other sex crimes.
The Scottish Government is to provide £8.5m over the next three years to help health boards deliver better services for victims, through additional staff, more training and better facilities.
The action takes forward the work of a taskforce set up last year following a critical report by HM Inspectorate of Constabulary in Scotland, which found significant variations in services across the country, with some "unacceptable" and many carried out in police stations. Some complainers faced lengthy journeys for tests and cases were found there they were asked not to wash for a day or more after an assault.
Led by Chief Medical Officer Dr Catherine Calderwood, the expert group is supporting health boards to improve services for children and adults who have experienced rape and sexual assault.
Cabinet Secretary for Health Jeane Freeman commented: "I want to see compassionate healthcare, and support should be as close as possible to the point of need. Our Taskforce is driving improvement in this important area and they are on track with their five year plan."