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Government announces additional funding for victims’ services

The Government has announced an overhaul of victims’ services that will see up to £50 million generated from offenders to help create a speedier, more supportive system for victims of serious crime.

Under the new proposals set out by the Justice Secretary, Kenneth Clarke, criminals will be forced to fund victims' support services and those with unspent convictions could be banned from claiming compensation.

The proposals have now been put out to public consultation, which will run until 22nd April 2012. The proposed reforms include:

  • Ending payments for minor injuries such as sprained ankles, cuts and grazes and speeding up payments for serious injuries;
  • Greater funding for victims' support services, better targeted at those most in need;
  • Stopping criminal injuries compensation payments to people with unspent convictions - totalling at least £75million over the past decade;
  • Banning criminal injuries compensation payments to people who have been resident in the UK for less than 6 months (except for UK and EU/EEA nationals);
  • A new statutory Victims' Code including the right for victims to make a personal statement and to request a meeting with their offender;
  • A simpler route of complaint and redress for victims.


Justice Secretary, Kenneth Clarke, said:

'Victims in this country must be able to rely on a justice system which punishes offenders properly and ensures that victims who suffer serious consequences are properly helped and supported.

'Cash compensation should be better focused on blameless victims of the most serious crimes and more support for victims should be funded by offenders rather than taxpayers.”

 

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