13 Apr 2015
Putting victims first – bridging the gap between knowledge and policing practice and policy
Understanding victims’ journeys through the criminal justice system has come under the spotlight at a special event held at Loughborough University.
Victims’ Journeys through the Criminal Justice System was the first in a series of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) events organised recently by the East Midlands Policing and Academic Collaboration (EMPAC).
Police officers, academics, victim support and Crown Prosecution Service staff attended on the day to hear from a number of guest speakers including Jo Aldridge, Professor of Social Policy and Criminology at Loughborough University; Neil Chakraborti, Professor of Criminology at University of Leicester; Matthew Hall, Professor of Law and Criminal Justice at University of Lincoln; Chief Inspector Paul McKinder from Leicestershire Police; and Trevor Worsfold, Manager of the Northamptonshire Victim Support Service.
Delegates also took part in a discussion exercise which explored the challenges and benefits of transferring research and knowledge on victims’ experiences into policing policy and practice.
The speakers presented on a variety of topics. These were:
- Understanding what is meant by ‘vulnerability’
- The main challenges faced when supporting victims of hate crime
- Some of the challenges faced by the criminal justice system in supporting victims
- The best approach when it comes to putting victims first – looking at Leicestershire’s Victim First programme.
Dr Karen Lumsden, Senior Lecturer in Sociology at Loughborough University, said: “We were very excited to host this EMPAC CPD event at the University, and importantly to provide a forum for police officers, academics, the government, CPS and victim organisations to come together to explore and discuss aspects of victims’ journeys through the criminal justice system. It also allowed delegates to further understand the importance of transferring research findings and knowledge into policy and practice.”
Peter Ward, Head of Learning and Development for East Midlands Police, said: “The event was a great success and very well attended. How the police service implements the recently published Victims’ Code and continues to improve public confidence is paramount to the success of policing.”