Extra support for crime victims during pandemic

Monday March 30th, 2020

Justice Secretary announces £100,000 ‘victims fund’ to help those in need.Funding

Victims of crime struggling financially amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic will be able to access assistance worth up to £3,000, Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf has announced.

A victims’ fund of £100,000 will help meet immediate financial needs of victims, paying for a wide range of goods and services where they have no other access to funds.

Victim Support Scotland (VSS), which will administer the fund, already provides financial support totalling £30,000 a year through the Scottish Government-backed ‘victims’ fund’. The new enhanced fund increases this to £100,000 and is available to victims supported by other organisations as well as VSS.

Following discussions with a range of victims organisations about the immediate and potential impact of the current national crisis and public health response – particularly on some of Scotland’s most vulnerable victims of crime – the Scottish Government has increased the size of the fund for the new financial year by £70,000.


Mr Yousaf said:

“Across the country, we are seeing incredible acts of courage and self-sacrifice as we all strive to keep our loved-ones and our communities safe in this public health emergency.

“However, for victims of crime, the impact of their own experience can be long-lasting – even before we consider the understandable anxiety that they will be feeling, along with most of us, about the coronavirus outbreak.

“While overall crime, including non-sexual violent crime, has fallen substantially over the last decade, we know that those living in our most disadvantaged communities are more likely to experience crime.

“That is why I’ve decided to increase our investment in the victims fund and help deliver a range of goods and services which are likely to be required by the most vulnerable victims during the outbreak. This includes support such as food vouchers, help with utility bills, as well as assistance for domestic abuse victims who may have to urgently leave their homes.

“The fund will also be able to help with other costs which have arisen as a direct result of being a victim of crime such as contributions towards insurance excesses, improved home security, and replacement windows, doors and furniture.”

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