Victim Protection Not A Sensitivity, But A Right To Be Protected - Tóibín
Aontú Leader & Meath West TD Peadar Tóibín has called for the reform of existing practice surrounding the early release of violent offenders and the notification of the victim.
Tóibín: “I have been contacted several times over the past few months by constituents who were very worried about the impending release of violent offenders without due consideration for their safety. They find out through word of mouth or backdoor channels that perpetrators of violent crimes against them are being released prematurely and without notification of the victim. This is similar for temporary releases as well. When I asked the Department of Justice about the matter, they said that the “sensitivities and concerns of victims” should be balanced against rehabilitation and reintegration. Victim protection and safety is not a sensitivity or a concern – it is a human right. It is a human right for victims of violent crime that their own government work to protect them against repeat violent offences – and not just classify as it as a sensitivity.”
“The DOJ also reported back to me that a Victim Liaison Service was operated by the Irish Prison Service, however the responses of my constituents indicate that the availability of this service is not known about. This could be a question of advertisement or resources. The service itself is an opt in service for victims to keep up to date. I am calling on the government to make this service an ‘opt out’ service, and to ensure less victims fall through the cracks to be left fearful and anxious over the release of their offenders. I am also for greater reform of premature release/temporary release laws, whereby the victim is consulted and the release shall only occur when the pertinent protections for the well-being of the victim have been put in place.”
NB See Parliamentary Question & Response
PQ Prison Releases