Page last updated at 15:47 GMT, Tuesday, 25 November 2008

Help for in-care abuse survivors

Young children - generic
Ministers said children had been let down by the system

Scotland will become the first part of the UK to offer specialist help to adults who suffered abuse as children in care.

The Scottish Government announced it was funding a confidential helpline, as well as a website and leaflet campaign.

Scottish Children's Minister Adam Ingram said government had a duty to help people who had been let down by those supposed to be caring for them.

A total of 750,000 will be spent over three years on the initiative.

Specialist workers will offer support and counselling, as well as advice on using the criminal injuries compensation scheme.

'Stain on history'

Helen Holland, who was abused as a child while in residential care, said the service has been needed urgently for some time.

"Survivors the length and breadth of the country have had no central point to go for help until now and this new support and advocacy service will bring them some hope for the future," said Ms Holland, who represents the Survivor Scotland organisation.

Mr Ingram said the past physical, emotional and sexual abuse of children in care in Scotland must never be forgotten.

"The system let these young people down in the most awful way, and it is our duty to confront this stain on the nation's history of caring for children who could not live at home."

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SEE ALSO
'Truth forum' for abuse victims
07 Feb 08 |  Scotland
Call for care home abuse centre
22 Nov 07 |  Scotland
Care law 'anomaly' to be probed
14 Jun 07 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West

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