New funding to extend violence reduction project to Edinburgh hospital

Thousands of pounds is to be injected into a successful violence reduction project to make its services available in Edinburgh.

The Navigator project, which already operates at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, helps victims and perpetrators of violence make the changes they need to improve their lives.

Funding of £70,000 has been granted to enable the service to be offered at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh.

Justice Secretary Michael Matheson (pictured), who visited the emergency department of Glasgow Royal Infirmary to announce the funding, said: “This successful programme will be extended to another major Scottish hospital, meaning this unique and tailored approach will be offered to even more people.

“The Navigators I met today do a remarkable job dealing sensitively with people who are injured and distressed, often defusing situations which could lead to further harm.

“There are many people who struggle to break the cycle of violence that destroys lives without the right support.

“This is where the Navigators can make a real difference, by speaking to people when they are at their most vulnerable and offering support.”

Less than a third of emergency department patients who are victims of violence report the incidents to police.

The Navigator project operates by giving patients who are admitted to hospital an opportunity to defuse difficult situations, identify the services which could help to change their life and assist them in accessing the services they require.

The project, funded by the Scottish Government, is run by the Scottish Violence Reduction Unit.

Its director Karyn McCluskey said: “The Navigators provide a critical role in enabling us to interact with people who may be extremely vulnerable and far from traditional services.

“Some may experience a range of emotions including anger, confusion and perhaps a need for revenge.

“Our Navigators interrupt that cycle of violence, prevent further assaults and navigate people to services that enable them to better outcomes.”

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