National Victims’ Commissioner hails services in Cleveland

From left, Chief Constable Iain Spittal, Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger, and Baroness Newlove. Picture by Stuart Boulton.
From left, Chief Constable Iain Spittal, Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger, and Baroness Newlove. Picture by Stuart Boulton.

The national Victims’ Commissioner says she’s very impressed with the work being done in Cleveland to support victims of crime.

Baroness Helen Newlove praised how services identify the needs of victims, the wealth of services victims have access to and how they help to prevent further crime.

The national advocate visited the area to assess how support services for vulnerable victims of crime are commissioned.

She said: “I’ve been very impressed with the work in Cleveland in supporting victims of crime, particularly the great work taking place to help prevent further victims of fraud.

“Cleveland certainly has a lot of support to offer victims living in the area, and I look forward to that continuing.

“Ensuring that victims receive a personalised service that suits their needs and their circumstances are absolutely key – I can see that together with Durham, Cleveland is focusing on this to bring about some real improvements for victims of crime in the area.”

Cleveland Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger is responsible for the delivery of victim services within the force area, including specialist support for victims of sexual and domestic violence.

In April 2016, he launched Victim Care and Advice Service with Durham PCC Ron Hogg following a £600,000 investment.

Since its launch, the service has reached out to over 4,000 victims in Cleveland, with over 1,400 receiving specialist one-to-one support.

Mr Coppinger said: “Helen has given us a unique and independent perspective on the victim experience and I’m so pleased she was impressed by the services we have on offer.

“Ensuring a better deal for victims and witnesses is a key objective in my Police and Crime Plan and I will continue to work closely with the police to make sure victims are placed at the centre of the criminal justice process.”

Chief Constable Iain Spittal said: “Victims are absolutely at the heart of all we do.”