Dundee City Council Housing Domestic Abuse Policy wins prestigious award

Dundee City Council Housing Domestic Abuse Policy wins prestigious award

Anne Rendall

A policy designed to support victims of domestic abuse living in Dundee City Council housing has scooped a prestigious national award.

The Housing Domestic Abuse Policy picked up the Colin Mair Award for Policy Development at the recent Scottish Public Service Awards.

Anne Rendall, convener of Dundee City Council’s neighbourhood services committee, said: “Being chosen for this award is a particular honour given the strength and depth of the other innovative policy developments that were also shortlisted.

“I am delighted that our work has been recognised on a national stage and hope that other councils and housing providers can use our template to develop their services.”

Councilor Lynne Short, the council’s fairness and equalities spokesperson, added: “The policy, which has been in place now for just over a year, sends a very strong message that not only will we actively support victims of domestic abuse, we will not tolerate such behaviour by our tenants.

“A range of agencies and individuals, including an active local Violence Against Women Partnership, have provided amazing input to the creation and implementation of the policy.”

In 2019 the council signed up to the Make a Stand pledge, which was established by the Chartered Institute of Housing in partnership with Women’s Aid and the Domestic Abuse Housing Alliance. The pledge encouraged social landlords, including local authorities, to support people experiencing domestic abuse.

One of the commitments of the pledge was to put in place and embed a policy to support those affected by domestic abuse in council housing in the city.

A policy working group, led by the council’s housing service and including representatives from Dundee Violence Against Women Partnership, local adult and child protection services, Dundee Women’s Aid and the council legal services, developed the plan.

The awards, organised by Holyrood in partnership with the Scottish Government and Scottish Parliament, have been running since 2014 to celebrate the daily contribution made to Scotland’s civic society from within the civil service, Scottish Government, Scottish Parliament, local government, health and social care sector, broader public sector and their partners within the Third Sector.

Co-hosted by the presiding officer of the Scottish Parliament, Alison Johnstone MSP, and deputy first minister John Swinney, the awards, held at the Scottish Parliament, recognised the rich and unique diversity of public life in Scotland and the vital relationships that cut across departmental, geographic and institutional boundaries.

Sarah Gadsden, chief executive of the Improvement Service, which sponsored the award, made the presentation.

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