Criminal Justice Review: Response to Rape - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 1:28 pm on 26 May 2021.

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Photo of Lord Harries of Pentregarth Lord Harries of Pentregarth Crossbench 1:28, 26 May 2021

Everyone is agreed that the present system is failing badly, with only 1.6% of rape allegations leading to a charge and so many victims left traumatised by the process. The Minister called this “regrettable”. To a lay person in this sphere, to put it bluntly, it comes across as quite appalling.

I want to press the Minister, if I may, on the question asked by the noble Lord, Lord Ponsonby, which I am afraid he did not answer. Does he agree that, if we are serious about the recommendations when they are published, the Government will need from the outset to do what the Welsh Government have done: put forward a number of progress indicators, with a report published each year? If it is anything like the Northern Ireland report, there could be hundreds of recommendations in a wide range of spheres, and it would be so easy for them simply to drop through the sand unless there is a proper system of prioritisation and annual reports to Parliament on the progress on their implementation.