Commissioner welcomes efforts to help victims

By Ross Findon

Thursday, April 3, 2014


RECOMMENDATIONS to reduce distress for victims of sexual violence have been welcomed by Hampshire and Isle of Wight Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Hayes.

In a statement issued today (Thursday) Mr Hayes said the needs of victims going to trial must be put first and be at the heart of the system.

It follows a report published by minister of state for policing, criminal justice and victims MP Damian Green, published last month.

The report's recommendations included making better use of special measures, such as live video links, that would allow a victim to give evidence and be cross examined from outside the courtroom.

According to the report there have been a number of cases in which adult and child victims have been left traumatised by the process of cross-examination.

Mr Hayes said: "I welcome the recommendations put forward in the Ministry of Justice’s report, which aim to ease the process of giving evidence in court and reduce the distress of victims. 

"Going to trial can be very intimidating for victims of sexual violence and can cause great anxiety and distress. 

"We must ensure their needs are put first during the court process and they are supported at all stages, ensuring victims are at the heart of the criminal justice system."

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