Press release

More than £16 million to help victims rebuild their lives

Victims of the most serious crimes will get access to vital support thanks to a new £12 million fund, announced by the Victims’ Minister Damian Green today.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Damien Green at rape support centre

This will sit alongside £4.4 million dedicated to provide 78 female rape support centres across England and Wales with financial support through to 2016 so they can offer specialist services for victims such as counselling, advice and helplines. The Ministry of Justice will also be establishing two new rape support centres in the coming year, on top of the 13 set up since 2010, meeting the Coalition commitment to open 15 new centres.

Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) will then be able to bid for a share of £12 million, on top of their budgets for 2014/15, to commission further specialist services for victims of the most serious crimes, such as domestic violence and sexual violence, and support for the most vulnerable victims in our society, based on local need. The fund will open for bids shortly, with PCCs given the funding as soon as possible.

Visiting Support After Rape and Sexual Violence Leeds (SARSVL), Victims’ Minister Damian Green said:

Victims need specialist services to help them move on, and where possible, recover from their experiences. It is vital in getting people to come forward and report serious crimes, such as rape, that there is a strong support structure in place. That’s why we’ve committed £16 million of extra funding to support these victims over the next year.

It is crucial we don’t leave victims to suffer in silence. That’s why the Government is opening a further two dedicated centres for rape victims and giving PCCs more money to commission specialist services in their area.

The £4.4 million funding will be dedicated for female rape and sexual violence support and puts centres on a secure financial footing. It follows on from the Government’s recent announcement to provide £500,000 for the first time to help male victims of rape and sexual violence. This was in addition to £1.5 million to support victims of domestic and sexual violence, which includes voluntary sector training and additional funding for PCCs to commission services locally.

Since the 2010 Coalition Agreement new centres have been established in Northumbria, Leeds, Southend, Suffolk, Mid-Wales, Hereford, Devon, Dorset, Trafford, Reading, Avon and Somerset, Lincolnshire and Central Lancashire. The Department will work closely with PCCs and the sector to decide the location of the two new centres depending on local need.

Notes to editors

For further information or to request an interview please contact Becky Inman in the Ministry of Justice Press Office on 020 3334 3519.

  1. £2.82 million has been ring-fenced since 2011 to establish 13 new rape support centres across England and Wales as part of the coalition commitment to open up to 15. A further two new centres will be commissioned in the next financial year.
  2. The new Rape Support Fund (2014-16) will support 78 centres, This Fund is part of a joint commissioning process with the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) which is offering an additional £1.26 million per annum which is ring-fenced to fund services across London’s four quadrants. £8.48 million has been ring-fenced over the previous three years to fund rape support centres.
  3. Nearly £66 million of central government funding is dedicated annually to organisations that help victims of crime.
  4. As part of MoJ’s review of victims services Getting It Right For Victims and Witnesses plans were outlined to generate up to £50 million extra a year for victims by making criminals pay more for their crimes. The Victim Surcharge has been extended and increased so that criminals, not taxpayers, are contributing more to services that support victims. This will see £50 million more each year spent on victims’ services on top of the £66 million committed by central Government.
  5. The Home Office has committed £28 million for specialist services to tackle violence against women and girls until 2015, including £1.72 million per year to part fund 87 Independent Sexual Violence Advisor (ISVA) posts on a stable basis from 2011/12 – 2014/15, an increase from 44 in 2010/11. Part of the ISVA role is to support victims through the Criminal Justice System from reporting a crime, or deciding whether to report a crime, throughout the investigative and prosecution process, and post-trial as necessary.
Published 25 February 2014