PCC Hosts Unique Victims’ Conference
Last week, the PCC hosted a significant conference where victims of crime bravely spoke about their experiences and organisations came together to discuss victims’ needs.
The event entitled ‘Building on Local Strength; Victims Services Commissioning Conference’ was held on 14th March at the Oasis Church in Chelmsford.
The jam-packed day was full of presentations, q&a sessions, brainstorming activities, workshops and some emotional real-life accounts.
‘The most valuable part of the day was when victims spoke about their experiences of sexual violence and abuse, and how they had coped. They were supported by staff from South Essex Rape and Incest Crisis Centre (SERICC). They spoke about how these sexual violence support services were helping them towards recovery. One woman said: “I was finally in a place where I could speak about my experiences. They didn’t make me feel bad and made me realise it wasn’t my fault. Finally, someone understood and it offered me such relief.”
The day offered all of the victim partnerships a chance to discuss how services are going to be enhanced across Essex in the future.
From October 2014, Police and Crime Commissioners will take-on responsibility for some victims’ services. In Essex, the PCC is using the capacity-building funding to help partners prepare for the new local commissioning opportunities.
Nick Alston opened the event by saying, “We are going to enhance victims’ services and this is a wonderful opportunity to discover new ways to do it. The journey is going to be challenging, but also imaginative and this day marks the start of it.“With my new staff members now in post, we certainly have the right expertise in victims’ work and commissioning, so we can work together to explore new ways to deliver these services,” he continued.
Greg Myddelton, Assistant Director for Commissioning for the PCC explained the changes that have occurred in commissioning victims’ services. Read the full presentation here. Victims conference presentation
Michaela White, Deputy Chief Executive Officer from Castle Point Association of Voluntary Services also gave a talk about Voluntary & Community Sector Involvement. Read her presentation here. CAVS Presentation Victims Commissioning Conference
The event is a key part of the process to develop a draft Victim’s Commissioning Strategy which will be made available for consultation later this summer.