Child abusers should pay into redress scheme

2 September 2019, 12:09

Child abuse

People who abuse children in care should make financial contributions to a new redress scheme, it has been suggested.

A consultation has been launched by the Scottish Government on the design of the scheme, set up for survivors of historical child abuse in care.

Having those responsible for abuse contribute to the scheme is one aspect that is under consideration as part of the consultation.

It will also consider a number of other proposals including defining historical abuse as abuse that took place before December 1 2004.

The call for views follows a commitment made by Deputy First Minister John Swinney in October 2018 to introduce a statutory redress scheme.

"Scotland has joined a small but growing number of countries facing up to the wrongs of the past," he said.

"Responding to the harm done to children in care by those trusted to look after them is the right thing to do.

"I know that nothing can make up for what happened, but along with other measures to help survivors, financial redress is an important step.

"Getting the design of a financial redress scheme right is of the utmost importance if it is to give survivors the acknowledgement they need and deserve.

"That is why I encourage everyone to have their say by taking part in the consultation."

David Whelan, a spokesman for Former Boys and Girls Abused in Quarriers, said: "We welcome the very positive steps that the Scottish Government has taken to commit to implementing a redress scheme for former residents abused in the past care system.

"The severe harm, damage and trauma inflicted and its impact on former residents abused, as highlighted in the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry, simply cannot be quantified in monetary terms.

"A redress scheme that is fair and reasonable will go some way to help survivors rebuild their shattered lives."

Helen Holland, chairwoman of In Care Abuse Survivors group, said: "We encourage all survivors to participate in the public consultation. It is important their voices are heard."