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Last Updated: Thursday, 7 September 2006, 12:41 GMT 13:41 UK
Scheme to improve abuse services
Boy by railing
Ministers urged agencies to work together to tackle abuse problems
A series of pioneering schemes providing more help for child victims of domestic abuse are being launched across Scotland.

They aim to put children's needs at the heart of new ways of running services and sharing information.

The projects will run over the next two years in four areas - Falkirk, Edinburgh, West Dunbartonshire and Dumfries and Galloway.

It will involve new guidance for agencies like police and social work.

The children's hearings system, health professionals and voluntary bodies will also fall under the new schemes.

Announcing the plan, Deputy Education Minister Robert Brown said it was important for agencies to respond to young domestic abuse victims in an "appropriate, timely way".

Children at risk

"They must work together to ensure that young people who are coping with experiences like this have access to the support they need whether this is from formal, professional services or indeed by enabling mothers and family members to help the children affected," he said.

In a related move, a new body will also advise ministers on improving services for young abuse victims.

Its members will include police and social work chiefs and experts in the health and voluntary sector.

The plan has been welcomed by police chiefs.

Association of Chief Police Officers Scotland child protection spokesman Tom Halpin said: "Where police officers identify children who live in a household with domestic abuse, we give a commitment that we will work together with partner agencies to facilitate support and further intervention where this is required."


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