Why me? inputs into National Victim Strategy

Published: Wednesday, December 20th, 2017

A new National Victim Strategy is being prepared by the Ministry of Justice as part of MoJ single departmental plan. The intention is that this will set the framework for victim services for the next five years. The timetable for producing it is very short. Consultation with selected victim groups took place during November and December with Ministers aiming to publish the strategy in March 2018.

Why me? were invited to contribute an initial response about victims rights and RJ. The four recommendations we proposed are

1.      Restorative Justice – a right

Recommendation 1

We recommend that access to Restorative Justice, information about it and ultimately, the right to have the option to undertake it in the appropriate circumstances should be central to the strategy.

2.      Victim Code of Practice entitlements

Recommendation 2

We recommend clear and consistent and enforceable measures to ensure Code compliance by all agencies delivering victim services.

3. Victim Code of Practice – treating everyone equally

Recommendation 3

We recommend that the strategy makes the entitlement for victims of youth crime, an entitlement for all victims. Restorative Justice has been successfully used across the country by Youth Offending Teams for many years. Not all victims take up the offer but those who do benefit hugely as do the young people who have offended.

4.National Probation Service – the role of Victim Liaison Officers

Recommendation 4

We recommend that the role of Victim Liaison Officers in the National Probation Service should be reconsidered in the light of victim need. This may lead to victim service provision being taken out of NPS and being offered as part of a more generic victim service which is set up to respond to individual’s needs.

We commit to keeping you updated on progress with the strategy.

If you have comments on this or want to read our full response, please contact lucy.jaffe@why-me.org

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