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Vera Baird welcomes Victims’ Commissioner’s annual report

8th July 2014

Northumbria’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Vera Baird QC, welcomed today’s publication of the Victims’ Commissioner, Baroness Newlove’s annual report and congratulated her on a first year in which she has ensured the needs of victims remain at the heart of government.

A key achievement of Baroness Newlove has been to champion Victim Personal Statements, this is where the impact on victims is made known to the sentencing judge and made a difference, especially in the Rolf Harris case as the court had a clear understanding of how his victims felt and the effect his actions have had on their lives.

Vera Baird agrees with the Baroness when she states: “In many ways what they (victims) want is very simple, they want the right information at the right time in a way in which they can understand it.”

The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner in Northumbria is currently working towards commissioning victim services.

Vera Baird QC said: “I am passionate about ensuring that victims are at the heart of everything we do. The services that we offer must meet their needs and I am doing this by working closely with those affected by crime and those who provide support services to victims and their families.”

Vera Baird has met with Baroness Newlove to discuss the work that is happening in Northumbria

Mrs Baird added: “It is very important that she intends to track victim complaints about the Criminal Justice System, if victims don’t receive the support they are entitled to, there needs to be a remedy available.