Police and Crime Commissioner recognizes the outstanding commitment of volunteers delivering restorative justice (22 Jan 14)

Sixty volunteers who have given over 700 hours of their time to help victims of crime will be recognized for their work at an awards evening tomorrow.(THUR)

High profile dignitaries including the Police and Crime Commissioner for West Yorkshire, Mark Burns Williamson, Chief Constable Mark Gilmore, and the Lord Mayor of Bradford, Khadim Hussain will be at the event at City Hall in Bradford.

The volunteers help with Neighbourhood Resolution Panels which bring together victims, the person who has harmed them, and the community, providing effective outcomes for offences and behaviour that might otherwise have received no further action including low-level crime, neighbourhood nuisance and Anti-Social Behaviour.

Those involved include West Yorkshire Police, Bradford City Council and West Yorkshire Probation Trust.

The project has a staggering 90 per cent victim satisfaction rate. Up to 97 per cent of those who have been through the process have not reoffended or had further calls for service.

Mr Burns-Williamson, who will present some of the awards, said: "Victims must come first, as the new Victims Code recognizes, and in any situation where the person who has done wrong is able to put right their actions, it must be the victim who is comfortable and receives the proper assurance that justice has been done.

"The introduction of the Victims Code means Restorative Justice solutions will be applied where appropriate.
"I thank the volunteers who have given over 700 hours of their own time and the Community Safety Partnership, which brings together all those who work day in, day out, to keep communities in Bradford safe and feeling safe.

"These volunteers deserve the thanks of us all as their hard work is helping ensure those who break the rules do change their ways."

Councillor Imran Hussain, the deputy leader of Bradford Council and the chair of the Community Safety Partnership in Bradford, said: "We have seen the positive results of restorative justice in our district and it is clear these schemes are making a real difference to people's lives - victims feel like something is being done to help them which also benefits their communities while offenders, in many cases, are turning away from crime.

"It is great to recognise these volunteers who work hard for our local communities. We are committed to working with our partners and reducing crime in the district."

Mr Gilmore added: "Restorative justice is a really effective way of dealing with some crimes, ensuring that offenders are appropriately dealt with in a waythat also satisfies their victims.
"I'm grateful to the volunteers who have given up their own time to help make a difference. This is extremely valuable work, as reflected in the high victim satisfaction rates and reduction in reoffending." 

© Copyright West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner 2019