Police and Crime Commissioner backs call for ‘victims’ law’

22nd December 2020

The Police and Crime Commissioner for Gwent, Jeff Cuthbert, has backed calls by the Victims’ Commissioner for the UK Government to introduce laws to give victims more rights about how they are treated.

Victims’ Commissioner Dame Vera Baird made the call as part of a new report which concludes that victims are treated as ‘bystanders’ in the criminal justice process. She says a new law is needed to give victims enforceable rights about how they are treated by the police and in the courts.

The UK Government previously said it would consult on a new law earlier in the year, however, it has yet to do so.

Jeff Cuthbert said: “I fully support the Victims’ Commissioner and agree that new legislation is needed to give victims more rights throughout their criminal justice journey.

“Supporting victims is one of my key priorities and I am proud that in Gwent we are making great strides to ensure that we deliver a better service for victims.

“Gwent Police was the first force in Wales to bring a wide range of victims support services under one roof in our Connect Gwent victims’ hub, ensuring that all victims and witnesses to crime in Gwent are offered support.

“In 2019 we worked with Gwent Police to establish a Victims’ Board to scrutinise the delivery of services for victims and witnesses of crime, ensuring that they are consistent and good quality. We are committed to continual improvement and plan to invest further in these services next year.”

If you have been a victim of crime, or witness to a crime, you can access support from Connect Gwent. You do not have to report this crime to the police to access these services. Contact 0300 123 2133 or email connectgwent@gwent.pnn.police.uk