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Domestic Abuse can be physical, emotional, sexual or financial abuse of one person by another with whom the person is or has had a relationship with. Domestic abuse also affects children.
Physical Abuse can include slapping, punching, hitting, kicking and threats with weapons.
Emotional Abuse also known as coercive control includes name calling, intimidation, humiliation, mind games, threats, degradation or being isolated from family and friends.
Sexual Abuse including rape.
Financial Abuse is being forced to borrow money and/or make fraudulent claims, being forced to go without essentials, money being withheld or having to account for spending with receipts etc.
Using the Law
If your partner or ex-partner is abusing or harassing you or your children, you can use the law to protect yourself. If you choose to use the law, it is useful to have as much evidence as possible about what your partner/ex-partner is doing.
This evidence can be text messages received, calls to the police – by you or someone else – that will have been recorded, accounts from witnesses and any medical records from your GP or dentist. To get legal protection you have to apply to the court.
There are three main types of legal action that can be used:
- An Exclusion Order is a court order that suspends the right of a married person, civil partner or cohabitee to live in the family home.
- An Interdict is a court order that bans someone from specific behaviour such as threatening or assaulting you.
- A Non – Harassment Order is a court order which can be used against your partner/ex-partner, their family or any third party behaving in a way that frightens you or causes you distress.
The law can be quite complex so you could ask Women’s Aid for help. They can tell you how to find a solicitor who is experienced in family law, and give you information about what to expect. They may also be able to accompany you to appointments.
If you are in imminent danger call the police from a landline or mobile on 112.
Draw up a safety plan for you and your child in case you have to leave home in a hurry.
- Put emergency contact numbers on your mobile phone.
- Have a bag ready with some clothes, ID, (passport, driving licence, birth certificates), medication, some cash and benefit/tax credit paperwork.
- Agree with a friend or relative that you can go to them.
Scottish Womens Aid
Domestic Abuse Helpline 0800 027 1234
Abused Men in Scotland
Helpline 0808 800 0024
Over the last year and a half, Anne Baldock (pictured above with FM Nicola Sturgeon MSP) from OPFS took taken part in the Best Start Grant expert working group. The group contributed to the legislation, design and delivery of the grant and were consulted at each stage of the process by the Scottish Government. (more…)
At One Parent Families Scotland we have a committed, skilled team that works hard to improve the lives of single parent families in Scotland. In return, we support our staff and offer them opportunities to develop their career.
We recruit staff from a wide range of backgrounds and ages. We offer flexible working so that all staff can balance work with family and personal development needs.
Currently we have three positions open and the closing date for these is 12th April. (more…)
Nicola is a mum who lives with daughter in Falkirk. In this blog she describes how OPFS has helped her flourish through the OPFS Falkirk Family house service.
I am 29 years old and became a single parent to one daughter in 2015 after a breakdown in my relationship with her dad. My daughter was 3 months old at the time. Before I became a parent, I worked for the local authority as a Social Care worker based in a care home for elderly people with mental health problems. I went back to work for a short time when my daughter was 9 months old but, due to an erratic shift pattern, I couldn’t continue with this. (more…)
Shanan is a mum to a three-year-old son. She works part-time and lives in Bellshill, North Lanarkshire. In this blog, she describes the ways OPFS has supported her as a single parent.
Twenty years ago, in the city of Dundee a little acorn was planted when One Parent Families Scotland (OPFS) were officially registered to provide a flexible, home based, childcare service for the very first time. This was the first time any local authority had established a separate category for home based childcare services and, when it started, the only one in Scotland.
The service was officially opened by Councillor Helen Wright who came along on the first day of operations, 5th March 1999, to meet staff and the first family to use the service.
The Transforming Lives programme, funded by Agnes Hunters Trust, is now in it’s third week where the focus was on self-awareness. Participants created a mandala art piece which contain familiar images that has a meaning for the who is creating it. These mandalas represent the connection between our inner and outer world and designing a mandala can be both inspirational and therapeutic.
Course takes place on Tuesday’s & Wednesday’s 10.00am – 2.30pm each week in YMCA, Liberty Road, Bellshill ML4 2EU.
For more information, call / text Marianne on 07789651300 or email
Three-quarters of single parent families are now living below the publicly accepted ‘Minimum Income Standard’ according to new research by Loughborough University. What are the key factors that cause most single parent families from reaching an adequate income?
Despite the fact that six in ten lone parents now work, most of the new jobs have been part time, and those working part-time have become more likely to have inadequate incomes. (more…)
One in ten Scots children experience multiple traumatic life events such as parental separation, bereavement or neglect says Edinburgh study.
Research launched today, by the University of Edinburgh, looks at the occurrence of seven types of adverse childhood experiences (ACE’S) which are linked with a range of poorer health and social outcomes throughout a person’s life. (more…)