Do you think victims of crime get a rough deal at Court? Or, maybe, they’re treated with kid gloves and too much attention is focused on them at the expense of justice?
Well, the Ministry of Justice wants your views. Sort of. They’ve issued a new draft of a ‘Code of Practice for Victims of Crime’. This ‘sets out the services to be provided to victims of criminal conduct by criminal justice organisations in England and Wales‘.
This is the document that the consultation is based on. It does change the substantive law, but sets out the systems that in place for a victim. There is a separate section that is focused on victims who are under the age of eighteen.
The paper is split into different sections:
- Victims’ Entitlements – ensuring victims receive full information as to their entitlements and more targeted support
- Duties on the Court and other agencies – making the service tailored more to the needs of the individual victim
- Victim Personal Statement – also known as the Victim Impact Statement. More information will be given to victims as to the possibility of making a statement and the way that they will be used. Police will be able to give ‘Community Impact Statements’ and ‘Business Impact Statements’ will be available for all businesses.
- Restorative Justice – this will be given more prominence (although it had a bit of a bad press today, so we will see if this lasts) and there will be greater information available for victims.
- Complaints system – the complaints system will be ‘improved’.
The deadline for responses is 10th May.