Helpline (costs)
0345 603 9213
Mon - Fri 8am - 8pm
Calls to our Helpline from landlines or mobile cost the same as to an 01 or an 02 number and will generally be included in any discount schemes or inclusive call minutes. For more info, please see www.ukcalling.info/cost-calling
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How Can We Help?

To start with, we give you time to talk and we listen carefully to what you are telling us. When we understand the impact of the crime on you and those close to you, together we can agree the support that you need.

Emotional Support

Man looking at victim support scotland mugFor some people, emotional support is the most important. Following a crime, it’s natural to experience many emotions such as anxiety, confusion and anger. You may feel tearful and completely overwhelmed, and unclear about what you should do next.

We can help you understand and cope with how you are feeling.

Practical Help

Victim Support Scotland - © Julie Broadfoot - www.juliebee.co.ukFor others, practical help is the priority. If you’ve not yet done so and feel it is the right course of action for you, we can help you to report the crime. We can contact people on your behalf such as your doctor, housing association and social services and help you access other sources of support. We can help you to understand how the criminal justice system works and what this might mean for you.

We give you information to help you make decisions that are right for you. We can help reduce the stress of coping with an incident and provide you with information on what can appear as a potentially confusing process.

Our support is available over the phone, in your home or at our offices.

If you need to attend court, we can arrange an advance visit and show you around a court (when it is not being used for trials) and explain what typically happens on the day so that the surroundings are not unfamiliar when you arrive.

Emotional Support

We do not offer a counselling service, but we can help you understand and cope with how you are feeling. Our clients tell us that it’s often easier to speak with someone impartial than it is to discuss matters with family and friends.

There are common reactions and emotions often shared by victims of crime:Two women arms round each other at lake

  • A fear of leaving the house
  • Flashbacks to the event
  • Nightmares
  • A sense of being ‘overwhelmed’
  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Confusion
  • Tearfulness

Some people will recover after a few weeks, but for others, the experience is far more traumatic and long-lasting.

We’ve prepared a simple questionnaire to help you assess your feelings. You can download the questionnaire here Common Reactions After A Crime.

If you feel that speaking to someone would help, don’t hesitate to call the Helpline on 0345 603 9213. We will:

  • Listen to you
  • Give you time to talk
  • Understand the impact that the crime has had on you and others around you
  • Help you to understand and cope with how you are feeling
  • Help you to identify and agree the support that you need

We’re here at the end of the ‘phone and offer face-to-face support in a safe environment.

If you need help, call our Helpline now on 0345 603 9213. Alternatively, you can find the Victim Support Scotland office closest to you looking for Victim Support in your area.

Practical Support

There are a number of different ways that we can help:Man and woman looking at laptop screen

  • If you have not reported the crime but decide that you would like to, we can help you to do this
  • We can help you to feel safe in your home, ensuring that you have taken appropriate steps to make it secure
  • We can contact people on your behalf such as your GP, housing association and other organisations that may be able to support you
  • We can accompany you to appointments with other agencies that may be able to assist you
  • If you are likely to have to attend court, we can arrange familiarisation visits to the court which will allow you to see a court in advance of the trial. This can help make the whole experience is less daunting
  • We may be able to help you to access funds if you are in urgent need immediately following a crime. The Victims Fund can meet certain costs that a victim faces as a result of crime, such as lock replacement
  • We can assess your eligibility for compensation under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme and support you in making a claim if appropriate
  • We can help you to understand your rights, which are contained within the Victims and Witnesses (Scotland) Act 2014.

If you feel that speaking to someone would help, don’t hesitate to call our Helpline on 0345 603 9213. We will:Woman Supporting

  • Listen to you
  • Give you time to talk
  • Understand the impact that the crime has had on you and others around you
  • Help you to understand and cope with how you are feeling
  • Help you to identify and agree the support that you need

We’re here at the end of the ‘phone and offer face-to-face support in a safe environment.

Our support lasts as long as you need it and will not end until you are ready to move on.

If you need help, call our Helpline now on 0345 603 9213. Alternatively, you can find the Victim Support Scotland office closest to you by looking for Victim Support in your area.

Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme (CICA)

Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) deals with compensation claims for people who have been physically or mentally injured because they were the blameless victim of a violent crime. They are an executive agency, sponsored by the Ministry of Justice.

Some victims of crime may be eligible to claim criminal injuries compensation. Hand flling in a form

 There are 3 main types of application:

  • Single Incident Application Form
  • Personal Injury Following Period of Abuse
  • Fatal Injury Form

We can help with

  • Assessing your eligibility about the scheme and provide information on how to make an application.
  • Assistance with the completion and submission of an application.

Victim Support provides this service for free as does the Criminal Injuries Authority.  Your local Victim Support office can assist or you are able to do so you can call CICA directly on https://www.gov.uk/claim-compensation-criminal-injury/ or make a  telephone enquiry on tel.  0300 003 3601 Mon-Fri  8.30 – 5pm

The criminal justice system can appear complicated, but we can help you to understand what it means for you. You could come into contact with a number of agencies:

Victims' Code for Scotland

Recent legislation means that victims must be provided with information on their rights, and who to contact for help and advice.  To do this, the Scottish Government has published a Victims’ Code for Scotland.

The Code provides information on:

  • the types of support that victims may obtain and from whom that support can be obtained;
  • reporting a crime;
  • protection, including special measures;
  • legal advice/legal aid;
  • compensation;
  • interpretation and translation;
  • anything in place that protects victims’ interests when a crime is committed out with Scotland;
  • making a complaint against a competent authority (criminal justice agency);
  • the contact details for all competent authorities;
  • the available restorative justice services; and
  • reimbursement for expenses.

All victims have a right to receive a copy of the Code and any other information on their rights.  The police must make sure that victims are told about the Code and that they can request a copy of this from the police or any other criminal justice agency.

The Code is available in the following languages: Arabic, Bahdini, Farsi, Lithuanian, Mandarin, Polish, Punjabi, Romanian, Slovak, Sorani and Urdu.  To access the Code in any of these languages, please visit the Scottish Government website.  If you need the Code in another language, please call the Scottish Government on 0131 224 4227 to request this.

More information on your rights as a victim or witness can be found on the Scottish Government and Police Scotland websites.   If you want to talk about your rights as a victim or witness, Victim Support Scotland can help.

Victims' Right to Review a Decision Not To Prosecute

Victims of crime in Scotland have the right to a review of a decision not to prosecute, if this decision was made on or after 1 July 2015. You should, if possible, apply for a review within one month of the date you are informed of a decision not to prosecute. Generally you would be told of the review decision within 20 working days.

More information and a form are available from the Crown Office website.

Please contact your local Victim Support Scotland team for assistance and support.


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