Sussex PCC response to the publication of the revised Victims Code

19/11/2020

Sussex PCC Katy Bourne has welcomed the revised Victims Code published yesterday as a positive step in the right direction especially if more victims can be made aware of their rights and if there is greater compliance with the Code across statutory agencies.

The simplification and shortening of the Code will make it more accessible to victims and there are some elements that I particularly welcome.

“I’m pleased to see greater flexibility about the presentation of personal impact statements and the improved signposting to help that is available from the National Health Service, as well as the guidance for victims who may be approached by the media when they feel distressed and traumatised.

“I echo the sentiments of experts in victims‘ services that we would like to see further legislation to support victims to ensure they get a consistent and appropriate response that is enshrined in law and not subject to localised interpretations.”

The new Code follows an open consultation earlier this year and will not come into force until 1 April 2021 to allow criminal justice agencies and others who provide services under the Code, time to embed any operational changes to meet their new obligations.