Scottish Assembly gives financial help to rape crisis work

Rape Crisis Scotland has received the first tranche of funding to support helplines and centres from the Scottish Assembly last week.

The organisation received £407,500, which will be spent on existing rape crisis centres, a review into the existing level of service provision, and a feasibility study into four new centres across Scotland. It is the first time that the sector has received funding from the assembly.

"It will alleviate some of the difficulties in running the helplines," said Sandy Brindley, national development worker, at Rape Crisis Scotland.

"A woman may ring up to find that the number is constantly engaged, and that's a direct result of funding shortages."

Scotland's minister for communities Margaret Curran announced in February that £2m had been allocated for rape-crisis funding over the next two years.

The situation in Scotland contrasts markedly with the situation in England and Wales, where there is currently no national co-ordinating body for the 63 independent locally-based rape-crisis groups.

The Rape Crisis Federation closed last year when the Home Office withdrew funding at the end of October.

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