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Support for victims of crime at risk due to government funding delay

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Delays to government funding for support to victims of crime could lead to the reduction or loss of valuable services and Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Sue Mountstevens is joining her fellow elected Police and Crime Commissioners in calling for funding clarification.

PCC Sue Mountstevens is calling on the Ministry of Justice for urgent clarification of the grant available so she can continue to commission help and support for victims of crime and the most vulnerable people in society.

The delay in funding means that many organisation that provide this support also face uncertainty potentially leading to a reduction of specialist help and support for vulnerable people. The government grant to PCCs to commission these vital services was £63 million for 2015/16.

Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens said: “I have made putting victims first a priority for the police in Avon and Somerset however it’s challenging to plan for the future when it’s not clear how much money we will have to support victims of crime.

“Future planning to support victims, collaborative work with partners in delivering victim services and wider support for vulnerable members of our community, is currently all uncertain because we simply don’t know how much money we have to spend and support this vital area of work.

“We have so many great support services for victims of crime and anti-social behaviour in Avon and Somerset.  I’d like to be able to reassure them that the long-term provision of their service is secure, unfortunately without knowing I simply cannot do this.”

Support for victims and vulnerable people that maybe at risk include:

  • Specialist emotional and practical support, information and signposting
  • Specialist support for victims of crime and anti-social behaviour (ASB) who require enhanced support relating to mental health, learning difficulties, physical disabilities, problems associated with isolation, race religion or sexuality
  • Specialist support for young victims of crime and ASB up to the age of 18 and victims of crime and ASB aged 1-25 where additional needs are identified
  • Specialist support for victims of rape and sexual assault
  • Specialist Restorative Justice services
  • Additional specialist support for victims of modern slavery
Posted on Friday 22nd January 2016
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