This course has passed.


A domestic abuse incident is recorded roughly every 10 minutes in Scotland and accounts for almost a quarter of all violent crime.

In February 2018, Scotland passed the Domestic Abuse Bill which, amongst other provisions, aims to tackle both physical and emotional abuse by criminalising controlling and coercive behaviour.

In preparation for the introduction of the Act, our Tackling Domestic Abuse course provides you with a comprehensive understanding of the new legislation, what implications it has for changing practice across all sectors, and gives you practical guidance on how to meet your statutory duties and improve practice in your local area.

Through a series of interactive sessions and an afternoon workshop run by Scottish Women’s Aid, you will go back to your organisation armed with understanding and practical tools for implementing the new Act.

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Learning Outcomes

  • Explore the aims of Scotland’s new Domestic Abuse Act and the impact that it will have
  • Gain a thorough understanding of the new domestic abuse legislation and how it will affect your organisation
  • Understand new prosecution processes and how criminal justice procedures will change
  • Consider how new provisions around children’s experiences of domestic abuse should be incorporated in child protection training and children’s services protocols
  • Understand how working with perpetrators of domestic abuse can help to change their behaviour and make both adult and child victims safer
  • Explore training needs and resources for helping diverse staff to implement the new Act
All the Understanding ModernGov courses are Continuing Professional Development (CPD) certified, with signed certificates available upon request for event.

Enquire About In-House Training

To speak to someone about a bespoke training programme, please contact us:
0800 542 9414
[email protected]


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09:00 - 09:45


09:45 - 10:00

Chair’s Welcome and Clarification of Learning Objectives

10:00 - 10:30

Tackling Domestic Abuse: Policy to Practice

  • Why has Scotland’s new Act been called the world’s “new gold standard” for domestic abuse legislation?
  • What is the new domestic abuse paradigm that framed development and debate about the Act?
  • What are the challenges and opportunities for making the Act matter for children?
  • For their non-offending parents?
    What are the challenges and supports for implementation in local authorities? In criminal justice?  In social work?
10:30 - 11:00

Delivering Equally Safe Strategy in Scotland

11:00 - 11:15

Morning Break

11:15 - 12:00

Achieving Successful Prosecution of Domestic Abuse

  • Outline and explain the provisions of the imminent new criminal offence in the Domestic Abuse (Scotland) Act 2018
  • Discuss some of the challenges of prosecuting domestic abuse and how these can be overcome
  • Highlight other key provisions in the legislation in relation to criminal evidence, procedure and sentencing and how these should improve protection for victims of domestic abuse and the children who experience and are affected by it
12:00 - 12:45

Supporting Victims and Families of Domestic Abuse

  • Consider how engagement with survivors can improve local homelessness policy and provision
  • Understand how housing staff work with police, courts and criminal justice teams to coordinate action against serious offenders
  • Ensure that victim-survivors of domestic abuse have immediate access to practical help and legal assistance
  • Identify key steps for keeping victim-survivors safe in their own homes and, when not possible, for providing safe accommodation
12:45 - 13:30


13:30 - 15:00

Workshop: Strengthening Frontline Responses to Domestic Abuse

Facilitated by various staff from Scottish Women’s Aid 

  • Messaging about psychological violence to media, staff, service users:  reducing victim blaming and increasing take-up of services
  • What the new aggravation means for reducing harm to children and their non-abusing parent—children’s experiences of coercive control
  • Strategic leadership makes a difference—increasing accountability in local systems through improvement and performance management
  • Legal Aid, protection orders, everything you need to know about accessing justice for victim-survivors and accountability for perpetrators
  • Training as a tool for change: demands, costs, resources at local and national level

Facilitated by Pet Fostering Service Scotland (PFSS):

  • How domestic animals (pets) add to the issues surrounding domestic abuse, what sources of support are available to the owners and the pets, and the safeguards that must be put in place when support is being offered – hat could be done to increase the support available – topic facilitated by Anne Docherty
15:00 - 15:15

Afternoon Break

15:15 - 16:00

Working with Perpetrators of Domestic Abuse

  • Maximise the safety of domestic abuse victims and hold offenders to account through the Caledonian System
  • Recognise how working with perpetrators of domestic abuse as part of a community-based response can help to prevent reoffending
  • Explore upcoming developments for the Caledonian system across Scotland
16:00 - 16:15

Feedback, Evaluation & Close


Radisson Blu Hotel – Edinburgh

Radisson Blu Hotel, 80 High St The Royal Mile, Edinburgh, EH1 1TH