More than 6,500 children have witnessed domestic abuse over the Christmas period, police figures have revealed.
A report by the Violence Reduction Unit (VRU) published ahead of their annual domestic abuse conference on Monday has shown that 6,585 children were present during domestic abuse incidents committed in December and January.
But the real figure could be even higher according to anti-violence campaign leader Strathclyde Police Chief Inspector Graham Goulden.
He said: "These are just the incidents we know about, the incidents where police have been called and recorded that children were present. Sadly, this will not be the full picture. It's likely there are other children out there that we don't know about who will have seen domestic abuse over Christmas."
The release of the figures follows the joint "letter to Santa" Christmas campaign by the VRU and Children First to raise awareness of the impact of domestic violence on children and young people.
Alison Todd, director of policy and practice at Children First, said: "We need to start thinking about children who witness domestic abuse as victims, because often they are. Research has shown that children are more likely to be physically abused in homes where there is severe violence and also, a minority are more likely to be sexually abused.
"As a society, we need to be sure that we are doing all we can to protect children from domestic abuse - the data suggests that well over 30,000 children in Scotland could be living in fear of abuse and violence."
Other speakers at the annual conference at the Scottish Police College in Tulliallan, Fife, include Scotland's Chief Medical Officer Sir Harry Burns and Heather Coady, children's policy manager at Scottish Women's Aid.
Ms Coady had planned to speak about the Children Experiencing Domestic Abuse Recovery (CEDAR) project, which received more than £350,000 of National Lottery funding this year to work with families who have experienced domestic abuse.
Mr Goulden said: "The issues surrounding children and young people who live with domestic abuse are many and varied. We need to raise awareness of all the many aspects of this problem in order to make it understood and help those who are suffering from it."