Abuse and neglect support centre to be created

Sex abuse

The Equally Safe Multi-Agency Centre will be a safe space for abuse victims in Edinburgh

12th December 2018 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

A pioneering centre for children, young people and adults who have been victims of sexual assault and other forms of abuse and neglect is to be created for Edinburgh and the Lothians.

A group of agencies have joined forces to develop the £2.9 million bespoke facility, which will be the first of its kind in Scotland when it is launched in Edinburgh next year.

The Equally Safe Multi-Agency Centre is being spearheaded by NHS Lothian, City of Edinburgh Council and Police Scotland and is backed by £2.4 million of Scottish Government funding.

The group, which drew in the expertise of charities Rape Crisis and Children First, will launch a one-stop, safe space for child protection, victims of gender-based violence and abuse from across Edinburgh, East Lothian and Midlothian.

Work is expected to begin in 2019 and the specialist centre will bring experts from child and adult protection, healthcare, police and social work together under one roof to provide age appropriate, wrap around care.

The centre will be created in St Katharine’s Centre in Edinburgh, which is currently owned by the City of Edinburgh Council.

Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said: “We are working to improve the experiences of victims at every stage of their journey through the justice system. An important focus is ensuring appropriately designed, trauma-informed healthcare services, which include facilities to capture forensic evidence, are made available to meet their needs.

“That is why we are supporting the Equally Safe Multi-Agency Centre, with more than £2 million of Scottish Government funding from justice and health budgets. It will bring together health, justice and social work services and is an excellent example of partners working collaboratively to provide vital services for children, young people and adult victims of sexual assault and other forms of abuse.”