At Thompson’s we would like to reassure all our clients that as far as possible we are operating as normal. The health and safety of our staff and clients is our primary concern during this outbreak and as such we are reviewing the situation on a regular basis and will be adapting our working practices following government guidelines. However, we have had to make some minor changes to how we are doing things.

Following Government guidelines, we have temporarily closed all of our offices and our staff are now all working from home using secure technologies to ensure they are able to continue to progress with existing and new cases as normal. All face to face meetings have been cancelled, however we are continuing to hold these meetings via phone and video calls. All the team are contactable on their direct dial numbers and email should you need to speak with your solicitor, please do not hesitate to talk to us about anything during this time.

We know these are uncertain and unsettling times for many of our clients, and the wider population, and things might look a little different for the foreseeable future. But our focus remains on our dedication, knowledge and strength that we provide to all our clients. We will continue to provide updates over the coming days and weeks in accordance with official guidelines and to keep everyone informed of the situation.

As always, for any concerns, advice and updates on your case; Talk to Thompsons.

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Historic Abuse

The recent case of Linda McCall - the Borders teacher found guilty of assault and aggressive and abusive behaviour towards young children in her care in a primary school raises some important questions.

It is indubitably horrifying that a teacher can do such things, and as a society, we all have a collective gasp at such crimes in the modern age. Look beyond the conviction and the individual concerned, and just as disturbing, on a different level however, is the actions of the public body with statutory responsibilities to the children involved. Scottish Borders Council.

Following on from our recent blog launching Thompsons 2021 Scottish Parliament Election Manifesto we are exploring each of our demands in more depth.

Our Survivor Team works every day for the justice of survivors of historical abuse and have been watching with keen interest the development of the Redress for Survivors (Historical Child Abuse in Care) (Scotland) Bill. This Bill, which aims to compensate survivors, has recently been finalised and while we acknowledge it is a step in the right direction it is lacking in several areas and we urge to next Scottish Parliament to amend these areas.

The review group, tasked with improving the Scottish Criminal Justice System for the management of sexual offence cases, have now published their findings and recommendations on 18th March 2021.i The focus was to improve the system for the complainers and the vulnerable witnesses, without compromising any of the rights of the accused.

Over the last few weeks, the #MeToo movement has once again become prominent.  Notably, the reports have come from the sports world with Olympians sharing their experiences, along with allegations against musician, Marilyn Manson.

Since it began in 2017, the #MeToo Movement has effected real change. It has the power to change both the civil and criminal courts as we know it across the world, as it changes our understanding of collective evidence.

As a number of areas of Scotland are going through their second phase of lockdown, there are many individuals that will be struggling more than most. For many survivors, abuse can be centred around the home. This year, Police Scotland and the National Domestic Abuse helpline has marked a staggering increase in the amount of calls that have been received in relation to domestic abuse.

We don’t just use the phrase ‘Talk to Thompsons’ we truly believe it is good to talk.  Which is why we have launched the Talk to Thompsons podcast and thank you for joining us in our discussion today.

It’s been a while since our last episode of Talk to Thompsons and there have been a few changes.  Firstly, this episode is hosted by Hazel Berryman from our marketing team with a more open discussion between our guests.

Both the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry (SCAI) and the England and Wales Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), were established in 2015 following growing numbers of allegations of abuse and changing societal pressures to look into how that abuse occurred. Much of this gained momentum after the 2011 death of Jimmy Savile, however survivors had been calling for independent inquiries for at least a decade before that.

Survivors of historic child abuse in Scotland have been working for decades to have their voices heard and to receive recognition and acknowledgement of everything they have suffered and everything they’ve had to endure since childhood. Only recently has the law finally been on their side.

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