Clare's Law Pilot Scheme Launched

A pilot scheme allowing people to find out whether their partner has a history of domestic violence, known as Clare's Law, will be launched today.

The Disclosure Scheme for Domestic Abuse Scotland is being piloted in Ayrshire and Aberdeen and will run for six months.

It comes after a similar programme was introduced in England and Wales following the murder of Clare Wood by her ex-boyfriend in Salford in 2009. She was unaware of his history of violence against women.

If successful in Ayrshire and Aberdeen, it could be rolled out across Scotland.

Superintendent Neil Kerr said: "Tackling domestic abuse is a key priority for the police and this scheme will allow us to share information about an abuser's past with a potential victim.

"Many people recognise the signs of abuse in their partner before it actually starts, such as jealousy or controlling behaviour.

"Applying through this scheme will ultimately assist those who are worried about their partner's behaviour to make a more informed decision about whether to remain in the relationship.''

The scheme has been developed with the Scottish Government, the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service, Scottish Women's Aid and Assist advocacy services.

Disclosures through the scheme can be triggered by victims themselves, family members or another member of the public concerned about the victim, or public authorities such as the police or social workers.