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Safe Video Link Evidence Facilities

A successful collaboration between HM Courts & Tribunals Service (HMCTS), the Crown Prosecution Service, the Police, Welsh Government and specialist providers has led to an increase in the use of an existing Safe Video Link Evidence Facility in the South Wales region and the establishment of 13 new facilities specifically for victims of violence against women, domestic abuse and sexual violence.

This means that specific equipment has been installed in the offices of specialist domestic abuse and sexual violence support providers across Wales so that victims of abuse can give their evidence safely at trial.

10 facilities are live across Wales with a further 3 going live in March 2022.

In addition, these sites are also available to victims who are going through family court proceeding.

It was recognised that parity of support was essential for victims, as many are going through both processes. This has led to further join up across Family Crime and Civil Court becoming a priority for Wales, progressed via the Criminal Justice Board for Wales.

Communication campaign

To ensure that these sites are used, are effective and to drive up special measures applications, as per the learning from the Special Measures Report by the Victims Commissioner, the Board were clear that an effective communication campaign was essential:

  • Phase one concentrated on increasing staff and officer awareness. Aiming to remind them of the benefits of special measures and their role and responsibilities to ensure victims are aware of their rights. A suite of material was created to support staff engagement, as well as a short professional animation that was shared internally through organisation channels and embedded into training
  • Phase two was the public campaign. This was undertaken in three steps
    - Television broadcast: An site visits and interview with Minister Jane Hutt and IDVA was broadcast on ITV news, to coincide with Sexual Abuse Awareness week
    - Social media campaign: All Criminal Justice organisations shared a leaflet and a professional animation on their social media channels to coincide with Sexual Abuse Awareness week
    - Radio advert, aired from 1st March - 13th March 2022 on Heart Radio across Wales

 

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