In 2011, the European Council and European Parliament adopted an historic piece of EU legislation greatly strengthening the rights of victims of crime. In this way all European countries (except Denmark) committed themselves to improve the rights and support for all victims of crime by the 16th of November of this year. This Directive, 2012/29/EU, ensures that all victims of crime have better rights, support and protection.
Many governments have recognised the importance of acting and have implemented new laws. Yet much still remains to be done, and there are countries which are far behind. There are governments which may only now be considering action and may only be considering action in paper – ignoring what is necessary to turn those laws into practice. On the 16th November of this year, the Member States must have in place the legislation to implement this Directive!
VSE is keen to use 16 November as a platform to highlight the great work of some member states and to put pressure on those who are not acting and is therefore organising this AWARENESS RAISING CAMPAIGN.
Why is this so important? In 2015, it is estimated that nearly 100 million people in the European Union will fall victim to crime. This was the case in 2014 and in previous years and it will most likely be the case in the years to come. The impact of those crimes may be relatively minor for some but for millions of people, the crimes they suffer are devastating and the consequences can be life changing – affecting victims, family and friends alike. These victims have the right to be recognised and treated with respect and dignity; be protected from further victimisation and intimidation from the offender and further distress when they take part in the criminal justice process; receive appropriate support throughout proceedings and have access to justice; and have appropriate access to compensation. All victims have these rights. Whether someone is a victim of violence, fraud, kidnapping, human trafficking, terrorism, gender based violence, sexual violence, child abuse, burglary, robbery, cybercrime, hate crime or any other crime. Whether someone reports the crime or not. They should have these rights.
Through this awareness raising campaign we want to reach National EU governments and European policy makers to ensure that rights become a reality for all victims of crime. We want to call on governments to show what they have done, and encourage Member States to step up.
And YOU CAN HELP! Every person can help make rights a reality for victims!
- Join our THUNDERCLAP – and raise your voice through facebook or twitter, https://www.thunderclap.it/projects/33386-raiseyourvoice4-victimsrights?locale=en
- Use the #VictimsRights hashtag – to raise your voice for victims of crime through twitter, facebook, tumblr or other social media
- Follow us on Twitter – to support our awareness raising campaign by retweeting or liking, https://twitter.com/VictimSupportEU
- Write to your member of the European Parliament – to engage them to ensure that rights become a reality for victims in all member states, http://www.europarl.europa.eu/meps/en/map.html
- Write to your national government – to ask them what they are doing to improve rights and support for victims
- Check our website regularly – to follow all our actions around the implementation of the deadline and our campaign on the European Victims day on the 22nd of February
THANK YOU FOR RAISING YOUR VOICE FOR #VICTIMSRIGHTS!