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Crime victims in London "let down" by Met

The Met came bottom in a survey of victim crime satisfaction. Photo: Eye Ubiquitous/Press Association Images

A new report from the London Assembly has said that the Metropolitan Police needs to improve the way it treats victims of crime after the Met came bottom in a survey of victim satisfaction.

In the report, Duty of Care: Improving support for Victims of Crime, the Assembly's Police and Crime Committee said they had heard from victims who had encountered difficulties in reporting crimes and had not been kept informed on how the investigation into their case was going. The Assembly also said that support organisations had made complaints about how police officers were trained in dealing with victims.

"Too often the support given to victims and survivors of crime by the police, and other agencies that make up our criminal justice system, is simply not good enough. They are let down by the system designed to protect and care for them."

– Joanne McCartney, Chair of Police and Crime Committee

In a survey on victim satisfaction between June 2011 and June 2012 by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary, only 74% of the Met's victims said they were satisfied by the way they were treated. That is 10% below the average in England and Wales and the Met's figure has actually fallen since 2010. There were also differences in the answers from certain groups:

  • 72% of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic victims were satisfied.
  • 77% of white British victims were satisfied.
  • 70% of disabled victims were satisfied.

The survey also found that less than 70% of victims in the boroughs of Hackney, Enfield and Tower Hamlets described themselves as satisfied with the Met.

In the report, a senior police officer told the Committee members that the Met had not always concentrated on supporting victims. However, it found that certain boroughs including Sutton had tackled the issue and as a result, they had higher scores in the survey.

In April last year, the Met introduced a new approach called Total Victim Care which is aimed at improving the way it treats crime victims. In a statement, the service said its victim satisfaction levels had now risen to 77% and it was rolling out a series of initiatives to improve the situation.