Violence Against Men

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament at 4:24 pm on 10th June 2010.

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Photo of Nigel Don Nigel Don Scottish National Party 4:24 pm, 10th June 2010

Christine Grahame is a fraction ahead of me there. I also spoke to Grampian Police, which is quite clear that its view would now be the same in recognising that there is such a thing as a male victim of domestic abuse. The police now try to be even-handed—those are my words, not theirs—but whether that was the position historically is an issue that I will leave members to contemplate. However, that is now where at least Grampian Police is.

By contrast, the response that I received from Aberdeen City Council—I do not want to pick out a particular local authority, although other members have done so—quoted research that suggests that, in 93 per cent of cases, domestic abuse is committed by a male perpetrator. The statistics that it was prepared to quote were the court statistics, which shows that public authorities are not looking over a terribly wide area and they see the easy statistics that come from the court rather than what is behind them. From that, I draw the conclusion that, although we might be beginning to gain some understanding, and although some parts of public authority, such as the police and the Lord Advocate, have got there, I am not convinced that every other public authority understands that there might be two sides to the coin, and that they need to be careful about what they are doing.