Police and Crime Commissioner announces new service to support victims
The Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), Anthony Stansfeld, is pleased to announce the provider of a brand-new service to support victims, witnesses and family members affected by crime.
Thames Valley Partnership, a well-established local charity, has been awarded the contract for the Emotional Support and Advocacy (ESA) Service following a formal tender process which began in October 2017.
From early April, the ESA Service will offer individualised and group support to adults affected by many forms of crime, including violent crime, burglary, robbery, fraud and repeat episodes of anti-social behaviour.
Support will be available regardless of when or where the crime took place or whether the individual has reported it to the police. The new ESA Service joins a suite of other services for victims funded by the PCC to help those affected by crime, which includes a Young Victims service, an Independent Sexual Violence Advisory Service, and a Restorative Justice Service.
Anthony Stansfeld, Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley said: “I am pleased to announce that Thames Valley Partnership has been awarded the contract for my Emotional Support and Advocacy Service.
“This contract forms a key part in the re-design of my services to support victims of crime across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire. The service will be able to assist a victim or witness through any criminal proceedings, as well as provide further emotional support to help them cope with the impact of the crime. The need to provide advocacy services to victims is something that has been previously highlighted, and I am delighted that this will also form part of the service.
“I look forward to working further with Thames Valley Partnership and I hope that the Emotional Support and Advocacy Service, alongside my new Victims First Hub and other services, will go some way in ensuring that any victim or witness who requires help can receive the tailored support they need.”
Patsy Townsend, Director of Thames Valley Partnership said “The team at Thames Valley Partnership are delighted to have won this contract and look forward to working with the Police and Crime Commissioner to develop and deliver a high-quality support service to victims in the Thames Valley.”
- The introduction of the ESA Service forms part of a wider review of victims’ services by the PCC, which has included a consultation with victims about the problems faced after a crime and the type of support they want to help them to cope and recover.
- To simplify the pathway into support for victims, support from any of the PCC’s victims services, including counselling, can be accessed from April 2018 through a new ‘Victim’s First’ Hub.
- The Hub will provide a single point of contact for victims or referring agencies who are seeking advice, signposting, assessment, coordination of support or referral on to the most appropriate agency for their needs.
- Further information, including telephone number and a referral form, will be available from 1st April on the ‘Victims First’ website at victims-first.org.uk