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Baroness Newlove: 'Victims deserve better'

Baroness Helen Newlove Credit: PA

The victim's Commissioner Baroness Newlove is calling for victims of crime to be treated better. The Baroness will highlight any failings of the criminal justice system with a series of in-depth reviews of agencies. The review will also seek out examples of best practice.

The Commissioner as campaigned against violence since her husband Garry was beaten and killed by drunken teenagers outside their Warrington home in 2007. She will be scrutinising how agencies are complying with the Victims’ Code, dealing with complaints and using Restorative Justice.

Releasing her annual report today Victims Commissioner Baroness Newlove said: Victims deserve the very best possible support to get them through the haunting aftermath of crime. If they are not getting this - their concerns need to be taken seriously and improvements need to be made as a result.

I will be looking at good and bad practice to ensure all those who suffer loss and trauma are listened to and treated with dignity and respect. With the findings, I will be challenging the Government and other agencies to take action and make a real difference to victims and their families.”

The report sets out her achievements during her first year in office. It also includes her priorities for 2014-15 which include:

  • Monitoring compliance with the Victims’ Code – ensuring that all criminal justice agencies are compliant with the Code in the support they deliver to victims
  • Complaints and redress for victims – improving victims’ satisfaction with how complaints are dealt with and used to influence change

  • Restorative Justice – ensuring that this is a victim-led approach and is delivered by highly trained staff

  • Giving victims, including vulnerable victims a voice - to ensure feedback is used to inform policy

  • Putting victims first when cases are dealt with out of court – increase understanding of how out of court disposals operate and to ensure that victims are clear about their entitlements.

Baroness Newlove appointed as new Victims' Commissioner

Baroness Helen Newlove Credit: Press Association

Baroness Helen Newlove, whose husband was killed by a gang vandalising his car in Warrington, has been appointed as the new Victims' Commissioner.

Lady Newlove has campaigned for victims of crime since her husband Garry Newlove was kicked to death by thugs outside their home in 2007.

In the three-year role, unveiled by victims' minister Helen Grant, she will - among other duties - advise the Government on victims' views on existing good practice in the criminal justice system and areas for future work.

Baroness Newlove, who will succeed the UK's first Victims' Commissioner Louise Casey, went on to campaign to tackle anti-social behaviour and the underage and binge drinking culture.