HC Deb 07 February 2001 vol 362 c526W
Mr. Paul Marsden

To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what support is available during court cases to adult victims of sexual abuse; and if she will make a statement. [148600]

Jane Kennedy

Witness services provide practical help and support to victims and witnesses. There is a witness service in all Crown court centres and services are being rolled out in magistrates courts. The services provide emotional support to all victims and witnesses. They give information about court procedures, arrange pre-court familiarisation visits and liaise with the court about suitable waiting facilities on the day of the trial. A Witness Service volunteer may. if the victim wishes, accompany the victim into court. The Government are committed to improving the experience of the court process for victims in sensitive cases and are implementing the recommendations in "Speaking up for Justice"; a report aimed at improving the criminal justice process for vulnerable or intimidated victims and witnesses to enable them to give their best evidence.