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Clare’s Law Unveiled in Scotland

A pilot scheme, known as Clare’s Law, has been rolled out across Aberdeen and Ayrshire as part of the Scottish Government’s aim to tackle domestic abuse.

The Disclosure Scheme for Domestic Abuse Scotland will be piloted for six months and could become a permanent law if it proves to be successful in its initial run.

Clare’s law is named after Clare Wood who was killed by her former partner who had a history of domestic abuse. The law allows people to see if their partner has a history of domestic violence in a move to prevent domestic violence.

The law involved consultation from the Crown Office, the Procurator Fiscal as well as the Scottish Women’s Aid organisation and follows a similar law currently in place in England and Wales.

The move has been praised by those who have long campaigned for a law similar to Clare’s law in Scotland.

Supt Neil Kerr, of Police Scotland, said: “Tackling domestic abuse is a key priority for the police and this scheme will allow us to share information about an abuser’s past with a potential victim.

“Applying through this scheme will ultimately assist those who are worried about their partner’s behaviour to make a more informed decision about whether to remain in the relationship.”

The father of Clare Wood, Michael Brown, praised the move by the Scottish Government saying: “It is not acceptable that domestic abuse exists in this day and age and the sooner people are helped to get out of that environment the better.

“If Clare had known George Appleton’s background she almost certainly wouldn’t have become involved with him and if I had the knowledge I have now perhaps something could have been done and Clare would still be here today.

“This scheme is another way to help people and I can only see it as a good thing. If it prevents just one child from growing up without a mother or a father it will be worth its weight in gold.”

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