Crime Victims Code of Practice

West Yorkshire Police is supporting the new Code of Practice for Victims of Crime which aims to improve victims’ contact with the criminal justice agency, by providing them with the support and information they need.

Reporting a crime typically marks the start of a victim’s contact with the criminal justice system. From this point onwards, victims will often come into contact with a range of criminal justice agencies such as the police, courts and probation services.

The Victims’ Code is a statutory document which sets out the services and information victims of crime are entitled to from criminal justice agencies — like the police and courts — from the moment they report a crime to the end of the trial.

The new Code states that extra support should be given to three priority categories of victims — victims of the most serious crime, persistently targeted and vulnerable or intimidated victims. It also includes new sections aimed at businesses and young victims of crime.

For the first time, victims are now entitled to choose to make a Victim Personal Statement (VPS) and to read it out in court if the offender is found guilty. The VPS lets victims explain how the crime has affected them physically, emotionally or in any other way. The judge can then take this in to account when deciding on the sentence.

Full details about the new Code of Practice including downloadable reports, easy read and young person's versions can be found on this page

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-code-of-practice-for-victims-of-crime