Victims' Charter

Victims' Charter

As the Police and Crime Commissioner, my priority is to reduce the number of victims in Gwent. However, if you do become a victim, I will work to ensure that the minimum standards set out in this Charter are provided when supporting you.

1. You should expect to be treated fairly throughout the Criminal Justice process by all the organisations involved.

Everyone has the right to fair treatment by the organisations involved with them throughout the duration of their case.  It is my intention to make sure that our Criminal Justice agencies provide a fair and unbiased service to all victims, regardless of their background or circumstances on becoming a victim of crime.

2. I will ensure that you get an appropriate and timely response from the police, taking into account what the offence is and how it is affecting you.

We know from speaking with victims in Gwent that, except in an emergency situation, not everyone wants or needs to see a police officer after reporting their incident.  But when they do, I want to make sure that this happens within a timeframe that supports the nature of the offence committed, how this has affected the person or people involved, and whether or not they are vulnerable.

3. I will ensure that, when you contact Gwent Police, you are asked relevant questions to allow them to provide the right level of service and support to you.

Failing to identify and record incidents and crimes correctly, or to identify the level of risk in a situation, could result in victims not receiving the support and service they need.  We also recognise that different people will have different needs, depending on that person and their circumstances.

Whilst police officers must respond to the initial risks identified for any incident, the main aim of our Victim Risk Assessment is to focus upon the needs of the victim to ensure we deliver what they require and to reduce the risk of any further offences being committed. 

4. I will ensure that officers agree with you how and when you would like to be kept updated.

We recognise that being kept updated is a major factor in terms of victim satisfaction.  Agreeing with the person the terms of on-going contact by officers involved with their case will not only keep them updated on progress, it will help provide reassurance to them that something is happening, even if they can't see it.

5. You will be provided with the contact details for victims' services so that you can access support when you need to.

During their engagement with Criminal Justice agencies, it is important that victims are able to access support when they need to.  Some people may not recognise a need for this until later in the process, and it is important that once this is realised, they can access the appropriate services to help them.  Those whose needs are met earlier can choose to opt-out once they have recovered from the harm they have experienced.

6. I will ensure that partner agencies work closely with your police neighbourhood team so that they are aware of your incident

7. Where appropriate and with your consent, the information about your case will be shared with partner organisations to help officers identify additional support.

Recognising that no single organisation can meet the needs of all victims alone, improving the flow of appropriate information between all agencies should provide a clear pathway for support and joined-up service provsion for victims in Gwent.

Also, developing and adopting a multi-agency case management approach for vulnerable and repeat victims, priority areas and perpetrators, will provide support, ensure appropriate and relevant information-sharing between organisations and maintain the required victim-focused approach in order to resolve the issues experienced.

8. For matters that go to court, officers will work with victims and witness services to make sure that you are kept informed and given proper support.

It is essential that victims know what is happening throughout the duration of their case and this must come through improved communication and clearer processes for updating victims.  It is vitally important that victims are supported throughout their entire involvement with Criminal Justice agencies and through working together this must be achieved.

9. If the police need your property as evidence, they should make sure that it is looked after and return it to you as soon as it is no longer needed.

10. I will work with Criminal Justice partners to monitor how well they and the police respond to the needs of victims of crime and anti social behaviour.

I have already been working with partners to improve the services we provide to victims. As part of this, I will be regularly monitoring partners' performance when responding to victim's needs.  This will help ensure a sustained focus on effective service provision thorough engagement with our service-users.

In undertaking the Charter and working with service-users and partners, I will do my best to support the citizens of Gwent and provide for your needs in the event that you become a victim. I will also continue to provide what support I can to address any concerns you bring to my attention.