[1st Allocated Day]

Part of Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill – in the House of Commons at 5:49 pm on 15th March 2021.

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Photo of Priti Patel Priti Patel The Secretary of State for the Home Department 5:49 pm, 15th March 2021

It is absolutely right that we look at every single measure and approach to ensure that victims of rape receive justice. As the hon. Gentleman will know, the rape review is taking place and will soon be published.

We want to improve accessibility to our justice system for people with disabilities. Reasonable adjustments can be made for most people with disabilities to enable them to complete jury service. However, the law has to date prevented deaf people who require the services of a sign language interpreter from having an interpreter in a jury deliberation room with them. We are changing that to ensure that all deaf individuals are able to serve as jurors unless the circumstances of a particular case mean that it would not be in the interests of justice for them to do so.

As I said at the beginning, this Government were elected on a clear manifesto commitment to keep our country safe. That is what the British people rightly expect, and that is what this Bill will deliver, by supporting the police, by preventing and cutting crime and by restoring confidence in the criminal justice system, because giving people the security they need to live their lives as they choose is an essential part of our freedom. As we emerge from the coronavirus pandemic, we will build back safer and increase the safety and security of our citizens. This Bill will enable us to do exactly that, and I commend it to the House.