Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North has welcomed the Scottish Government’s new Domestic Abuse Bill which was introduced on Monday.
The new bill will strengthen the laws against those who psychologically abuse their partners using coercive and controlling behaviour. The Bill creates a new statutory offence of domestic abuse that recognises the damage and hurt that non-physical abuse can cause.
Last year, Mr Newlands submitted a consultation response to the Scottish Government, calling on them to introduce an offence which takes action on those on commit psychological abuse.
Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, said:
“Domestic abuse takes many different forms, including psychological and coercive abuse – both which can be just as damaging as physical abuse. I am proud that, as a society, we’ve come a long way from believing that domestic abuse is not only a physical act. The truth is that the psychological scars left by emotional abuse can have devastating effects on victims. I’m glad that the Scottish Government are working hard to make sure perpetrators face the justice they deserve.
“This bill will help our police and prosecutors hold abusers to account, but importantly, it also shows those who have suffered abuse that we stand with them and will take the steps needed to help them. This Bill will send a strong message to everyone who has suffered domestic abuse that the problem is taken seriously and I hope it will encourage more survivors to come forward.
“I know that legislation alone will not tackle the scourge of domestic abuse, which is why support services like the YWCA, alongside ASSIST, Scottish Women’s Aid and many other groups are so important in providing a vital lifeline for survivors.”