The Victims’ Commissioner’s Office is conducting a series of reviews into services that criminal justice agencies provide to victims to secure positive change for those affected by crime.

We will be speaking with all the criminal justices agencies listed in the Victims’ Code of Practice but most crucially, we want to hear about victims’ experiences and how they feel about the service they receive.


2017

Are we getting it right for young victims of crime? A review of Children’s entitlements in the Victims’ Code

This review investigated the treatment of children and young victims of crime by criminal justice agencies. It found that these agencies were at risk of failing children and young people who come forward to report crimes because they were not being taken seriously or not believed by the police, social workers, teachers or by society as a whole. The Victims’ Commissioner called on the government to conduct further research into how best to support children and vulnerable victims of crime.

The review was published in February 2017 and can be accessed here:

Are we getting it right for young victims of crime_February 2017

 

Victim Inequality in the Offer of Victim Personal Statements (2017)

This review assessed the demographic breakdown of victims who make a Victim Personal Statement for the 12 months ending March 2016. It revealed that less than one in five victims was offered the chance to make a Victim Personal Statement for court hearings; and that some groups of victims had an even greater chance of being disadvantaged.

The report was published in January 2017 and can be accessed here:

VPS Review_January 2017

 

2016

A question of quality: A review of Restorative Justice Part 2 – victims

This review assessed the quality of Restorative Justice services, according to the victims’ experience. It found that the reason many victims participated in Restorative Justice was to help the offender and aide their rehabilitation. However, the proportion of victims offered the opportunity to participate in Restorative Justice has fallen significantly, in 2015-16 only 4.2 per cent of all victims of crime were offered the opportunity to meet with their offender.

The report was published in November 2016 and can be accessed here:

vc-review-into-restorative-justice-services-part-2_november-2016

 

What works in supporting victims of crime: A rapid evidence assessment

This review collated the international evidence on what works to support victims as they journey through the criminal justice system and beyond. It provided an assessment on the provisions that should be in place in order to deliver a beneficial service for victims.

The report was published in March 2016 and can be accessed here:

What works in supporting victims of crime

 

A question of quality: A review of Restorative Justice Part 1 – service providers

This review focussed on what constitutes a quality Restorative Justice service. It found that even though there is a low uptake of Restorative Justice, it allows service providers to offer a ‘bespoke’ service for victims.

The report was published in March 2016 and can be accessed here:

A question of quality_RJ review part 1 – service providers

 

Victim Inequality in the Offer of Victim Personal Statements (2016)

A follow up report to the Silenced Victim in January 2016 provided a demographic breakdown of victims who make a Victim Personal Statement for the 12 months ending March 2015. It revealed that there is a victim inequality and that some victims are being disadvantaged because of where they live, their age, race and long-term health conditions.

The report can be accessed here:

CSEW VPS Findings_January 2016

 

2015

The silenced victim – A review of the Victim Personal Statement

This review focussed on how criminal justice agencies and partners involved in the Victim Personal Statement process deliver their obligations and what victims say they are experiencing. It found that even though victims, judges, magistrates and Parole Board members valued the VPS, over 60 per cent of victims reported that they had not been offered the opportunity to make one.

The report was published in November 2015 and can be accessed here:

The Silenced Victim – A review of the Victim Personal Statement.

 

A review of complaints and resolution for victims of crime

This review focused on the ways in which agencies allow or help victims of crime to make a complaint about their experience or treatment. It included our findings on what works well and where agencies need to make improvements.

The report was published in January 2015 and can be accessed here:

A Review of Complaints and Resolution for Victims of Crime_January2015