If you are experiencing domestic violence, you may be feeling a range of different emotions. Perhaps your abuser is apologetic and regretful the next day, so you feel guilty about thinking about reporting them. Or, they could be making threats that make you fearful about taking the matter further. Whatever the situation, and even if the abuse has only happened once, it is important to understand that it is unacceptable and you have the right to feel safe in your own home.
If the domestic abuse is happening right now and you feel in immediate danger, call 999. Find a safe space, ideally with a clear exit route and call the police straight away – this is why it’s important to keep your mobile phone with you at all times.
If the abuse is ongoing, there are a number of ways you can report it:
- By calling or visiting your local police station
- By completing Scotland Police’s online domestic abuse form. This can be submitted via the website, or if you prefer you can print it off and post it to the Domesic Abuse Coordination Unit at Police Scotland, Clyde Gateway, 2 French Street, Dalmarnock, Glasgow G40 4EH
When reporting any kind of abuse, it is important to provide the police with as much information as possible. If you can, keep a diary of all the things that have happened, including dates, times and details of any witnesses. Also keep a record of any abusive text messages, emails, post and recordings as these can be used as evidence, and take photographs of any injuries.
What happens next?
Police Scotland are dedicated to treating victims of domestic abuse sensitively and professionally, and will work hard to keep you safe. They will thoroughly investigate all incidents and evidence before taking appropriate action, and you will be put in touch with a Domestic Abuse Liaison Officer who will advise you on how to stay safe. They may recommend you stay with a friend or family member or put you in contact with an appropriate organisation, such as a shelter, where you can stay for the time being.