Government u-turn on cuts for victims of violent crime a victory says CWU
11th September 2012
Following a fiery debate and opposition from all parties in last
night's secondary legislation committee, the government has
withdrawn its proposals to cut compensation for the victims of
violent crime. The proposals to change the Criminal Injuries
Compensation Scheme (CICS) would have significantly cut
compensation for all victims of violent crime and excluded many
victims completely, including dog attack victims.
Billy Hayes, CWU general secretary,
said: "The government has been forced to ditch this most
unjust of cuts. Their proposals would have left victims of violent
crime with no access to modest compensation, regardless of how
debilitating their injuries.
"It's shocking that we ever had to fight this, but
thankfully sense has prevailed. This callous cut should never have
made it off the government's wish list and into Parliament. It
was a step too far which aimed to take a tiny safety net away from
victims of violent crime who have nowhere else to turn."
Justice Minister Helen Grant came under intense pressure after
MPs from all parties, including Tory, Lib Dem and Labour, spoke out
against the proposals. Labour's Shadow Minister Rob Flellow
delivered a stinging speech to lead the opposition and leading Tory
John Redwood also spoke against the proposals.
Dave Joyce, CWU health and safety officer,
added: "This is a major victory for CWU's Bite Back campaign in managing
to halt the changes. These proposals would have prevented dog
attack victims from even applying for compensation even though they
would have nowhere else to turn.
"Many MPs have thanked us for bringing this to their attention and used our briefing information in the debate last night. It's a small victory as we'd much rather see pro-active legislation aimed at improving responsible dog ownership and tackling the people who are responsible for attacks, rather than penalising the victims."
Read the CWU's
briefing to MPs regarding the CICS proposals.