A major assessment project has been launched to understand how victims and people affected by crime and anti-social behaviour in Cleveland wish to access recovery support.
Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) have a legal responsibility to commission services to support victims of crime. As a condition of funding provided by the Ministry of Justice, PCCs must prove they are helping victims cope with the impact of crime and recover from any harm they experienced.
Since 2016, Cleveland’s PCC has commissioned Victim Care and Advice Service (VCAS) delivered by Safter Communites to provide support to victims of crime and anti-social behaviour. The service – which has supported over 4000 victims in Cleveland – will end on 31 March 2022.
The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) has secured the assistance of the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) to look into the needs of victims in Cleveland, to inform a new service model from April 2022.
It’s the most in-depth study of its kind conducted in the Cleveland area and has a number of key aims, including:
- Understanding the level and type of victims in the Cleveland Police Force area;
- Identifying who our victims are, what their support needs are and whether current provision is reaching them;
- Exploring why some victims do not reach out for support.
The research team will consult and engage with VCAS and other key stakeholders, conduct analysis of police and victim service data and develop surveys for victims, underrepresented groups and the wider Cleveland community.
Their report containing their findings and recommendations is expected to be published in the summer.
OPCC Temporary Assistant Chief Executive, Rachelle Kipling, said: “We’re committed to ensuring that our victim services fit the needs and requirements of people affected by crime and anti-social behaviour in Cleveland.
“Through a really strong evidence base we can ensure those who most need support can easily do so. It’s great to have CPI on board to assist us in conducting an in-depth review of our current services and exploring any improvements we can make and what good practice in victim care looks like across the country.
“This research will allow us to assist the new Commissioner elected in May to develop and introduce a new service best suited to the needs and demands we have in Cleveland.”