The Moira Fund has campaigned for a Homicide Support Service in Scotland, one which will provide the ongoing support of a dedicated case worker to a family who have lost a loved one to homicide, one which has been available to families in England and Wales since 2010/11. We were delighted our Chair and Vice Chair, Bea Jones and Colin Field, were there at Victim Support Scotland’s Offices to hear Cabinet Secretary for Justice, Michael Matheson, announce that the Scottish Government has made available the money to set this up.
On 19 April 2017 we met with Michael Matheson to discuss the support needed for families and we proposed a Scottish Homicide Service to him. 19 April 2018 he announces the creation of the service and the funding. A minister who listened and acted .... well done & thank you
This meant a huge amount because the previous service seemed patchy to us, always. We knew there were help agencies offering much support but there were gaps between the services available and some families went through long periods of feeling neglected and totally alone, some had little help at all. It was often hit and miss.
Now Scottish victims’ families will be on a par with the rest of the UK and the new service will be established and run by Victim Support Scotland. This should mean traumatically bereaved families in Scotland should have the right kind of help, at the right time for them, delivered by the right person in the right sort of way. That’s so good to know. That is what we wanted. We will now work closely with a Scottish Homicide Service as well as The Homicide Support Service of England and Wales.
Families of murder victims to get dedicated support
thanks to campaigning by The Moira Fund
We didn’t realise just how widely welcomed this announcement would be, or that so many would acknowledge that our campaigning had played a big part in bringing this about. We were deluged by requests for interviews, featured in every major News programme in Scotland on TV and radio throughout the day. We are pleased that we had that kind of coverage.
Our status remains unchanged. We are still a small charity run by unpaid volunteers with no official funding whatsoever and we rely entirely on fundraisers and donations, on the goodwill of many caring others, and we are grateful to them all. We were established to help address needs which cannot be met by official funding and since more of those needs will now be recognised by a homicide case worker we will expect to have more Applications for Support. We want to help more - that is what we were set up to do. We will not be relaxing our fundraising efforts anytime soon