THIS IS AN ARCHIVED NEWS RELEASE FROM GMPCC.ORG.UK
Greater Manchester is changing the way support is delivered for victims of crime. Victim Support will continue to drive the frontline service but, under the hood, much has changed.
Commissioned by Greater Manchester Mayor and Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd, the new Victim Support ‘gateway’ service is designed to be a one-stop shop for victims of crime, providing people with a single point of contact for immediate advice and guidance, emotional support, advocacy services, and referrals onto specialist services when needed.
The service is open to any victim of crime, regardless of when the crime took place, what the crime was, or whether or not it was reported to the police.
Tony Lloyd said:
“Nobody chooses to become a victim of crime and it is something that most people are totally unprepared for. That’s why it’s so important that if it does happen you have a strong support network around you.
“The needs of individuals, not agencies, have been placed firmly at the centre of the design process for this service. I want to see victims of crime in Greater Manchester receive the support they need at the right time and in the right way. People shouldn’t have to navigate complex networks of services just to find help and information, especially if they have been a victim of crime.”
Victim Support advisors will now be based in multi-agency hubs across Greater Manchester along with staff from other services, including police, housing, social care, children’s services and more. In doing this, Victim Support staff will be better placed to provide victims with information and advice, calling on the additional specialist services of other agencies when needed.
Victim Support Victims Services Director Ellen Miller said: “We are very excited to be part of this new approach across Greater Manchester as it will be great for our caseworkers to be based with other important services that are also really focused on supporting people.”
Independent Victim Support staff will have direct access to multi agency teams, including the police, which means they will be able to support victims of crime more easily, provide them with information, and refer them onto other specialist services when needed. Alongside phone and face-to-face support, online live chat and self-help options are also being explored.
GMP Assistant Chief Constable Rob Potts said: “We welcome these developments within victim services, improving the way that we respond to the most vulnerable people in our society and ensuring individuals are at the heart of everything that we do.
“These changes will help us to continue to work closely with partners across Greater Manchester and ensure that everyone we support gets the best possible care from the best possible provider.”
The reshaped victim services model has been born from over 18 months’ of research, consultation and pilot schemes. It is just one of several commissioned projects and services under the Greater Manchester Victims’ Services umbrella, each designed to transform service delivery and improve the way we support victims of crime.
Alongside the new victim support model, a new restorative justice strategy has also been agreed to help victims cope and recover from what has happened to them, and reduce reoffending by making offenders face up to the consequences of actions.
If you’ve been a victim of crime and you want more information about support services or the criminal justice system, visit www.gmvictims.org.uk.