Fornethy survivors ask the Government to Reconsider The exclusion of Fornethy

Fornethy survivors ask the Government to Reconsider The exclusion of Fornethy

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Petition to
Scottish Government

Why this petition matters

Started by Fiona Lundie

Fornethy survivors ask the Government to reconsider the Exclusion of Fornethy in The Redress Scheme as it was apparently classed as a short term holiday where 200 of the Girls who were sent there strongly Dispute.

Fornethy survivors are the most valuable yet the most vulnerable group in society. At least 200 girls were sent to Fornethy Residential School from as young as 5 to 8 years old,  they Spent up till 6wks or more at any given time. Children were told they were going on a holiday. However most of the Children suffered horrendous abuse at the hands of the staff who should have been looking after them. Abuse of a child is horrific regardless of any time frame, it should be treated fairly and equally however within the Redress Scheme. This is not the case.

We appreciate that the Scottish Government have set up the Redress Scheme, but those with the responsibility for the care of children in the past, now have a responsibility to do the right thing today and that should include all victims regardless of the length of time we were abused.

As former pupils at Fornethy Residential School in Angus in the early 1970s, There is testimonies along with almost 200 women who came forward, to the Scottish Child Abuse Enquiry and Police Scotland. To come forward and expose this part of your lives to scrutinise so many years later is very challenging  and takes all the strength and courage you can muster. To take your self back to childhood is like reliving the abuse like it was only yesterday. To then be told that the Redress Schene will not apply to the former girls, as our confinement at Fornethy is not deemed long enough to be considered institutional abuse.

Abuse of a child is a horrific act even if only done once. It is implied by those who compiled the Redress Scheme that abuse must be sustained over a period to effectively claim redress. That a child taken under care of the local authority, or the education department can only be deemed to have been acceptably abused if they had suffered on a long-term basis.  However, this Redress Scheme seems to consider children who spent up to six weeks, often on multiple occasions, under the care of Fornethy Residential School have no right or expectation to be included in the scheme.They might as well say we are liars, and it never happened.

Police Scotland have taken statements from the majority of those concerned and assured them with great consideration and care that they consider this a serious matter indeed.

The Scottish Historical Child Abuse Enquiry have taken video statements under the greatest scrutiny and with witnesses  present to record the conversations.  They took the time to clarify the points raised and document them, presenting a completed statement for signature to each one who participated.

Neither Police Scotland nor the Enquiry ever disputed that abuse occurred.  In fact, with the corroboration of almost 200 women who came forward, neither Police Scotland nor The Enquiry made any of the parties aware that it was only certain abuse timelines that would be considered as reputable. We have to believe that both Police Scotland and The Enquiry would identify abuse of a minor,  under the care of authority, to be abuse whether it was once, twice, or one hundred times, or it be one hour, one  day or 1000 days.

Have all the Fornethy survivors to accept that The Redress Scheme would not consider short stay abuse as serious or as life changing as long-term abuse, and that a line must be drawn under it . We say definitely not

459 have signed. Let’s get to 500!