The Victims and Prisoners Bill aims to improve end-to-end support for victims of crime, with the intention to put the victim at the heart of the criminal justice system and to enhance the transparency and accountability of the various agencies involved in the criminal justice process.

The bill enshrines the principles of the Victims Code in law meaning that victims now have the right to; challenge decisions which impact them, be informed on criminal justice processes, have access to vital support such as IDVAs and IDSAs, and have the opportunity to have their voices heard throughout the process. It also grants powers for ministers to call upon criminal justice inspectorates to look into agencies when a victim is failed.

Read our response below to the Victims and Prisoners Bill:

Patrick Ryan, Chief Executive of Hestia, said:

"The introduction of this long-awaited Bill is welcome, as our experience shows that all too often victims do not get the support they deserve. It is crucial to be explicit about who is entitled to support - otherwise we risk allowing people to fall through the cracks, and resources could be spread too thinly. 

This definition must include victims of domestic abuse and modern slavery, as well as their children. These individuals have endured brutal crimes and must be supported. We hope too that the revised Victims Code will be given parliamentary scrutiny to ensure it is effective for the victims who urgently need it."