Commissioner insists needs of victims are at the heart of the criminal justice system

The needs of victims must be at the heart of the criminal justice system, according to Staffordshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner.

Matthew Ellis

Matthew Ellis

Matthew Ellis’ comments come in the wake of a report by the Criminal Justice Alliance, highlighting issues in the Crown Court system.

The study says victims and witnesses can be left feeling marginalised.

But Mr Ellis insists he is committed to putting the needs of victims high on the agenda.

“For too long the very services that are there to support victims and witnesses have been anything but user friendly, meaning the experience people have of the courts and criminal justice system can be as taxing and traumatic as the original incident,” he said.

“It has to be about putting the victims at the heart of the system, meaning that they are treated as individuals and avoiding duplication by joining up multiple services regarding victims.

“We’re changing things in Staffordshire through the new Victims Gateway which will make sure the system fits the victim, rather than the victim having to fit around the system.

“As this report shows, we must have a whole-system approach across services from the moment a crime happens to its conclusion in court, otherwise we are failing those who need help the most.”

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