The Domestic Abuse Bill, a step in the right direction? – Garden Court Chambers

‘The Domestic Abuse Bill received its second reading stage in the House of Lords on 5 January 2021. The government has indicated a commitment to improving the justice system’s effectiveness in providing protection for victims of domestic abuse and bringing perpetrators to justice.’

Full Story

Garden Court Chambers, 1st March 2021

Source: www.gardencourtchambers.co.uk

Lacuna in leave to remain policy arising from delays in identification of victims of trafficking – Garden Court Chambers

‘In EOG v SSHD [2020] EWHC 3310 (Admin) the Court considered a challenge to the Home Office’s policy not to grant victims of trafficking a right to work or leave to remain whilst they are within the National Referral Mechanism. Mostyn J found in the Claimant’s favour and declared the Home Office’s policy unlawful as it failed to implement the obligation in Article 10.2 of ECAT to protect potential victims of trafficking from removal pending the conclusion of the process. He held that “[s]uffering such persons to remain as overstayers, or as illegal immigrants, does not fulfil the obligation” (§48). He left the issue of how the policy should be reformulated to the Home Office to determine. As regards the right to work, the Judge held that “Someone in the position of the claimant, who has a time-limited right to work, should not have the arbitrary adverse consequence of a removal of that right meted out to her simply by virtue of the delays that she is likely to face” (§48).’

Full Story

Garden Court Chambers, 26th February 2021

Source: www.gardencourtchambers.co.uk

Criminals escaping justice as victims drop court cases due to delays, watchdog warns – The Independent

‘Rapists and other serious criminals are walking free because victims are dropping court cases because of delays, a watchdog has warned.’

Full Story

The Independent, 2nd March 2021

Source: www.independent.co.uk

New laws to protect victims added to Domestic Abuse Bill – Home Office

‘A raft of new amendments to the Domestic Abuse Bill will be presented, providing greater protections for victims and further clamping down on perpetrators.’

Full press release

Home Office, 1st March 2021

Source: www.gov.uk/home-office

Non-fatal strangulation to carry five years in prison under reforms – The Guardian

‘Ministers will make non-fatal strangulation a specific criminal offence punishable by five years’ imprisonment following pressure from campaigners.’

Full Story

The Guardian, 1st March 2021

Source: www.theguardian.com

Reforms to laws around intimate image abuse proposed to better protect victims – Law Commission

‘Proposals to improve protections for victims whose intimate images are taken or shared without their consent have today [26 February 2021] been published by the Law Commission of England and Wales.’

Full press release

Law Commission, 26th February 2021

Source: www.lawcom.gov.uk/

Domestic Abuse Bill – What does it mean for victims of domestic abuse in the family courts? – Garden Court Chambers

Posted February 25th, 2021 in bills, domestic violence, family courts, news, victims by sally

‘In the year ending March 2019, an estimated 2.4 million adults aged 16 to 74 years experienced domestic abuse in the last year (1.6 million women and 786,000 men). The government was elected with a manifesto commitment to pass the Domestic Abuse Bill, which passed the House of Commons in July 2020, and is set to become law once it has passed through the House of Lords.’

Full Story

Garden Court Chambers, 24th February 2021

Source: www.gardencourtchambers.co.uk

Inside a domestic violence call centre – BBC News

Posted February 25th, 2021 in charities, coronavirus, domestic violence, news, victims by sally

‘A major charity working with victims of domestic abuse says calls to their 24-hour helpline increased by more than 50 per cent in the year of the pandemic.’

Full Story

BBC News, 24th February 2021

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Victims of human trafficking: can they be criminals as well? – EIN Blog

‘Human trafficking is internationally recognised as threatening human rights and the fundamental values of democratic societies. States have taken action to prevent, suppress and punish trafficking and to provide support to victims of what is the third largest illicit money-making venture in the world. But what happens when the victims of trafficking commit a crime themselves? Should they be prosecuted? What factors are relevant in this assessment? And which arm of the State should the assessment of whether someone is a victim of trafficking be entrusted to? This is the first time the European Court of Human Rights has tackled these questions. The Court found that the UK had breached its obligations under articles 4 and 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights by prosecuting two Vietnamese children who were potential victims of trafficking.’

Full Story

EIN Blog 24th February 2021

Source: www.ein.org.uk

Rape social media posts: How speaking out got twin sisters sued – BBC News

‘Two sisters say they’ve been silenced by the man they reported for sexual assault after he sued them for talking about what happened.’

Full Story

BBC News, 24th February 2021

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Victims’ law call amid falling confidence in criminal justice – BBC News

Posted February 24th, 2021 in codes of practice, criminal justice, Ministry of Justice, news, victims by sally

‘The victims’ commissioner for England and Wales has called for a law to ensure people affected by crime are treated properly as they wait for justice.’

Full Story

BBC News, 24th February 2021

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Victims of human trafficking: can they be criminals as well? – UK Human Rights Blog

Posted February 23rd, 2021 in children, human rights, news, prosecutions, trafficking in human beings, victims by tracey

‘V.C.L. and A.N. v the United Kingdom (16 February 2021). Human trafficking is internationally recognised as threatening human rights and the fundamental values of democratic societies. States have taken action to prevent, suppress and punish trafficking and to provide support to victims of what is the third largest illicit money-making venture in the world. But what happens when the victims of trafficking commit a crime themselves? Should they be prosecuted? What factors are relevant in this assessment? And which arm of the State should the assessment of whether someone is a victim of trafficking be entrusted to? This is the first time the European Court of Human Rights has tackled these questions. The Court found that the UK had breached its obligations under articles 4 and 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights by prosecuting two Vietnamese children who were potential victims of trafficking.’

Full Story

UK Human Rights Blog, 22nd February 2021

Source: ukhumanrightsblog.com

Provision of support to trafficking victims following a negative conclusive grounds decision – Garden Court Chambers

‘In MN v SSHD [2020] EWCA Civ 1746 the Court of Appeal considered several linked cases brought by victims of trafficking who had received negative Conclusive Grounds decisions.’

Full Story

Garden Court Chambers, 17th February 2021

Source: www.gardencourtchambers.co.uk

Abuse survivor calls for UK children born of rape to have ‘victim’ legal status – The Guardian

‘One of the survivors of the Rotherham grooming scandal has asked the government to give children born from rape legal “victim” status so they can receive specialist help and potentially prosecute their fathers.’

Full Story

The Guardian, 16th February 2021

Source: www.theguardian.com

Radical change needed in handling of rape cases, says England and Wales police lead – The Guardian

‘Crack teams of specialist police officers are needed to bring rapists to justice and prevent a wholesale collapse of public confidence in the criminal justice system, according to the police lead for rape in England and Wales.’

Full Story

The Guardian, 14th February 2021

Source: www.theguardian.com

Victims of crimes ‘re-traumatised’ by system – BBC News

Posted February 9th, 2021 in bills, codes of practice, crime, criminal justice, families, news, victims by tracey

‘When Tracey Hanson’s son, Josh, was stabbed to death in an unprovoked attack in 2015, it was the start of a tough journey through the criminal justice system. She said she was “passed from pillar to post” throughout and the impact stays with her today. Experiences like hers – and others who have been victims of crime – is driving a fresh call from Labour for a “Victims’ Law” to strengthen their rights.’

Full Story

BBC News, 8th February 2021

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Requirement for all parole hearings to be held in private to be relaxed – Ministry of Justice

Posted February 9th, 2021 in parole, press releases, privacy, private hearings, victims by tracey

‘The rule which currently requires all parole hearings to be held in private will be relaxed as part of the government’s efforts to increase public confidence in the process.’

Full press release

Ministry of Justice, 8th February 2021

Source: www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-justice

Domestic abuse victims stalked as family courts share refuge addresses with ex-partners, commissioner warns – The Independent

‘The family courts are putting domestic abuse victims and children at grave risk by sharing the secret addresses of shelters with the abusive ex-partner they are fleeing, and some survivors are suffering stalking as a result, London’s independent victims’ commissioner has warned.’

Full Story

The Independent, 7th February 2021

Source: www.independent.co.uk

Domestic Abuse Bill: calls for data ‘firewall’ to protect migrant women – Law Society’s Gazette

‘The government has been urged to remove ‘blind spots’ in the Domestic Abuse Bill that could deter migrant women from reporting domestic abuse to the police for fear of being deported or enable perpetrators to control their victims.’

Full Story

Law Society's Gazette, 3rd February 2021

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

Over 30 years of the Unduly Lenient Sentence scheme – Attorney General’s Office

Posted February 1st, 2021 in appeals, criminal justice, press releases, sentencing, victims by tracey

‘For over 30 years the Unduly Lenient Sentence (ULS) scheme has helped victims of crime get justice. The scheme was launched in 1989 following public outcry over a series of controversial sentencing decisions, including the 1986 “Ealing vicarage rape” case where 21-year-old Jill Saward was raped by burglars at her father’s vicarage.’

Attorney General’s Office, 1st February 2021

Source: www.gov.uk/ago