Labour frontbench and PCC candidates write to Conservatives demanding they back Labour’s Victims’ Law
The Shadow Justice Secretary, David Lammy MP, the Shadow Minister for Victims and Youth Justice, Peter Kyle MP, and Labour PCC candidates have today written to their Conservative counterparts demanding that they back introducing Labour’s Victims’ Bill as the first piece of new legislation when the House returns.
Labour’s Victims’ Bill, introduced to Parliament as a Ten Minute Rule Bill by Peter Kyle MP on 9th February, set out provisions to put victims’ rights on a statutory footing, as well as new protections for victims of crime and persistent, unresolved anti-social behaviour. This built on Keir Starmer MP’s own Private Members’ Bill on a Victims’ Law in 2015.
In the past three manifestoes, the Conservative Party has pledged to introduce a bill that would give victims legally enforceable rights – but have failed to deliver.
At Prime Minister’s Questions on 17th March, after being asked by Keir Starmer, the Prime Minister committed to studying any proposals to improve the experience of victims in the criminal justice system.
David Lammy MP, the Shadow Secretary of State for Justice, said:
“Victims of violent crime including rape, assault and domestic violence are losing all faith in the justice system as they face delays of up to four years to get their day in court.
“Labour is demanding that the Conservatives finally introduce policies which support victims rather than letting criminals off the hook.
“We are calling on the Government and Tory PCC candidates to do the right thing and back putting our Victims’ Bill into law.”
Peter Kyle MP, the Shadow Minister for Victims and Youth Justice, said:
“We are living through a victims crisis. Over a quarter of all crimes aren’t being prosecuted because victims are dropping out of the process entirely. That means that 1 million victims every year are being failed by the very system designed to protect them.
“After a decade of broken Tory promises, Labour have introduced a Victims Law that’s ready to go. It makes victims unignorable in a system that increasingly overlooks their needs. Now it’s up to the Government to put politics aside and implement it without delay.”