Commendable progress made in meeting needs of victims and witnesses, but no room for complacency

Criminal Justice Inspection Northern Ireland (CJI) has commended the very good progress made by local criminal justice agencies in meeting the needs of victims and witnesses in a report published today, Friday 20 March 2015.

The latest publication from CJI looked at progress regarding the implementation of report recommendations from its separate reviews of the care and treatment of victims and witnesses and the use of special measures published in 2011 and 2012 respectively.  Inspectors were pleased to report that this latest review found considerable progress.  Of 28 recommendations made across the two inspections, 27 (96%) have been achieved either in full or in part.
The report, available today, also warns however that sizeable proportions of victims remain dissatisfied with the criminal justice system, and highlights that delay remains a significant concern for many victims and witnesses. 
Chief Inspector of Criminal Justice in Northern Ireland, Brendan McGuigan commented “This report continues to reveal the challenge facing justice organisations in Northern Ireland as they strive to meet the very diverse needs of victims and witnesses here.  While there has been very good progress, and Inspectors welcome that, there is no room for complacency.  I would urge a continuing effort to close the gap between standards and delivery.”
Mr McGuigan concluded “The commitment of various leaders across the criminal justice system and the clear political support, together with the personal interest of the Minister of Justice have been central to the good progress made to date.”