Cheshire police and crime commissioner David Keane, in partnership with victims’ commissioner Baroness Newlove, is asking local people who’ve been victims of crime to make their voices heard.
A national review has been commissioned by the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) following the controversial decision to release John Worboys – the taxi driver serving a sentence for a number of sexual assaults.
It will look into how effectively the parole process involves victims, how transparent the process should be and whether the Victims Contact Scheme is supporting victims in the way that it should.
As part of the review, Baroness Newlove is asking victims of crime to give their feedback on how the parole process and Victims Contact Scheme might be more open, and better support victims to cope and recover from the crime they have suffered.
David Keane said: “This is something I feel passionately about. It is crucial that local people in Cheshire, who have been victims of crime, have the opportunity to have their voices heard in this national review – particularly those who have experienced the parole process or the Victims Contact Scheme.
“As commissioner I continue to work tirelessly to ensure victims receive the support they need to recover from their ordeal.
“This ranges from funding essential support services such as Cheshire CARES – our local victim support service, which provides a single point-of-contact and signposting service for all victims of crimes; to working in partnership through my role as chair of the criminal justice board to deliver better outcomes for victims of crime.
“I welcome this review and support the work of Baroness Newlove in ensuring victims have the opportunity to shape the services which support them.”
The Baroness has written to PCCs up-and-down the country to encourage victims in their areas to take part in an online survey, which will be used to inform the review.
Baroness Newlove said: “I’m keen to give victims a voice on the parole process to help improve the experience for others.
“My national victim engagement survey gives victims the chance to express how best to open up parole, increase transparency, involve victims more closely, and whether there should be a right to review decisions.”
Victims of crime can have their say by completing the Victim Contact Scheme survey by Wednesday, March 14.
The review is set to be published in April.