Anger at Scottish policy that may force rape victims to testify
Campaigners in Scotland have expressed anger at new guidance that could force rape victims to give evidence against their will. Rape Crisis Scotland, as well as cross-party parliamentarians, have hit out at the new “reluctant complainers” policy which means rape victims who try to withdraw from cases may be compelled to testify where prosecution is deemed to be in the public interest. “For anyone who has the courage to report it and then gets to the point where they can’t continue – to then force them to testify is inhumane,” said Sandy Brindley, the chief executive of Rape Crisis Scotland. “It’s also self-defeating – if you have to put them in the cells the night before it’s not going to be useful evidence.”
Riding high! Peebles cements cycling-friendly reputation during Operation Close Pass
It already hosts the country’s biggest annual cycling festival in TweedLove. But Peebles cemented its bike-friendly reputation during a police operation in the Borders at the weekend. On Saturday, an unmarked officer rode a bicycle on the A72 to check if motorists would allow enough space when overtaking. And, while 10 motorists were pulled over further down the road by uniformed officers for passing too close, police revealed they were “very impressed” with the standard of driving on display.
Senior Scottish Government civil servant behind ‘shambles’ policing merger moves to new post
Scottish Government plans to merge railway policing have suffered another setback after it emerged that the senior civil servant associated with the policy is leaving his post.
Don McGillivray, deputy director of the Police Division, has accepted another job on the environment side of the Government which he will start shortly. However, critics of the plan to integrate the British Transport Police with Police Scotland believe the McGillivay move shows that the policy is in trouble.
Police Scotland- BTP merger plans ran up £400,000 bill
Scottish Government plans to merge railway policing have suffered another setback after it emerged that the senior civil servant associated with the policy is leaving his post. Don McGillivray, deputy director of the Police Division, has accepted another job on the environment side of the Government which he will start shortly. However, critics of the plan to integrate the British Transport Police with Police Scotland believe the McGillivray move shows that the policy is in trouble.
Seven new members appointed to the Scottish Police Authority Board
The Scottish Police Authority (SPA) Board have announced the appointment of seven new members. The new members are David Crichton, Gordon Dewar, Martyn Evans, Tom Halpin, Michelle Miller, Mary Pitcaithly and Jane Ryder. Tom Halpin will start in March, David Crichton and Jane Ryder in April and Gordon Dewar, Martyn Evans, Michelle Miller and Mary Pitcaithly later this year.
Susan Deacon urges police board to reflect on their position
Pressure is growing on long-serving members of the beleaguered Scottish Police Authority board to resign their positions as part of an overhaul of the organisation. Holyrood’s audit committee has written to the police oversight body asking for those who have “presided over mistakes” in the past to consider their futures. In an exclusive interview with Scotland on Sunday, SPA chair Susan Deacon said it was important that members of the board “reflect carefully” on their positions.
Crisis-hit Police Scotland spent £400k on consultants for scrapped transport merger despite service cuts
Cash-strapped Police Scotland spent nearly £400,000 on consultants to oversee a merger with transport cops that was scrapped last month. We can reveal the force paid an astonishing £6.6million on outside consultants since July 2014 as they cut services. The figures, obtained under Freedom of Information laws, include £399,500 to Ernst & Young for overseeing the controversial merging of British Transport Police – a move postponed indefinitely by Scottish ministers after fierce criticism.
Scottish Government pledge more funding to tackling sectarianism
Nine projects will receive £515,000 for anti-sectarianism work – building on the “unprecedented” investment in this area by the Scottish Government in recent years. The new funding will help reduce and prevent sectarianism in communities by delivering education in schools and workplaces, including:
- Teacher and youth work training
• Engagement with online communities
• A school pupil exchange programme to Northern Ireland’s Corrymeela community
The new initiatives build on Scottish Government investment so far, which has supported 108 organisations to deliver anti-sectarian education, bringing total funding for this work to £13.5 million in the past six years.
Police officer slammed in report after £900k victimisation claim faces new misconduct rap
A detective who failed in a £900,000 compensation claim against his bosses has been criticised in a 135-page tribunal report. The judgment follows a five-month action against Police Scotland by Constable Andrew Reid. Reid claimed he was targeted by senior figures for complaining about the actions of the former Counter Corruption Unit. But the report by an employment tribunal, led by Judge Robert Gall, attacks the credibility of Reid’s evidence during the case. The judgment said: “The tribunal had some difficulty in this regard.”
‘No hiding place’ for online child sex abusers
Perpetrators of online child sexual abuse are to be targeted by police in a new hard-hitting campaign. The crackdown will be launched tomorrow with the warning that offenders are “just one click away from losing everything”. It follows an investigation by Police Scotland that showed almost one-quarter (23 per cent) of registered sex offenders had committed online sexual abuse of children. Police are also worried by an apparent increase in crimes that include possession and sharing of indecent images of children, live streaming of abuse, online or webcam sexual extortion and grooming for sexual purposes.
Police board ‘must learn from failings’
The new boss of Scotland’s police watchdog has issued an ultimatum to board members who presided over its recent troubles – advising them to ‘reflect on their position’. The warning by SPA chairman Professor Susan Deacon puts pressure on long-serving members.
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