Courts and Tribunals: Recovery

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:50 pm on 3rd December 2020.

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Photo of Robert Buckland Robert Buckland The Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice 12:50 pm, 3rd December 2020

May I assure the hon. Lady that as a matter of day-to-day practice those issues are very much built in to the system, as is the need to prioritise those cases? She is absolutely right to talk about the problems about witnesses losing heart or victims themselves feeling let down by the system, and that is why we have continued to improve the way in which we use remote technology. The section 28 roll-out is a further measure that will support vulnerable witnesses and victims.

I have seen, not only over the past few years, but over many years in practice, a real sea change in how we deal with these sorts of cases. More needs to be done, and the hon. Lady will be glad to know about the increased investment in independent sexual violence advisers, which are a key element in supporting victims of crime right from the beginning of that early police investigation, because it is at that point that often things go horribly wrong for victims of sexual crime, and it is that work that we are going to be doing. We can talk further about this matter, and I would be happy to engage with her directly about it.