by Matt Gallagher on September 29, 2012
I have been busy this past week speaking with different people and organisations who have involvement in the criminal justice system.
I met with Jeremy Brown, the minister for Crime Prevention, which will be a key part of my platform in the Police and Crime Commissioner Election, and I also met with Sir Hugh Orde, President of the Association of Chief Police Officers, and my fellow Glasgow Celtic fan, Paul McKeever, Chair of the Police Federation of England and Wales.
I also met with Javed Khan, Chief Executive of Victims Support, and spoke with him about the five pledges that Victims Support have asked all PCC candidates to sign. I was happy to sign the pledges, and I made a sixth pledge; a Liberal Democrat PCC will invite Victims Support to designate an Assistant Police and Crime Commissioner for Victims Issues. Javed immediately made a commitment to me; Victim Support will find the funding to support this important post. It will not come from the Council Tax payers of Greater Manchester.
This evening, I attended a hustings at Manchester Town Hall, hosted by Victim Support and chaired by Allan Beswick from BBC Radio Manchester.
I announced the proposal to establish a Victim’s Commissioner for Greater Manchester, and Javed’s agreement to secure funding. This will give victims of crime in Greater Manchester a dedicated champion who will ensure that their needs and concerns are addressed more effectively than ever before.
I said: “I will put Victims front and centre if I am elected as Greater Manchester’s first Police and Crime Commissioner. As a former frontline Police officer, I have seen the devastating impact crime has on Victims, and there are still too many Victims”.
“Too often Victims are not heard, and the system does not give them an opportunity to be fully supported; an Assistant Commissioner for Victims would support me as a Commissioner to ensure Victims have a voice.”
Full details of this and other proposed APCC’s will be in our manifesto, which will be published shortly. The Liberal Democrat’s are fully committed to working with VSS and the other agencies dedicated to helping victims of crime. We will also work to build bridges to those who are victims of crime and do not report their suffering.
No one should suffer in silence. This proposal will give them a powerful voice at the very top, ensuring that their issues are advanced and funding secured for this important work.