In-depth interviews were conducted with 32 victims of serious crime in New Zealand to explore their experience of procedural justice and what justice meant to them. In the study, 68% of victims felt that justice had not been served in their case, despite 86% of cases resulting in a guilty verdict and 52% in imprisonment of the offender. Victims’ definitions of justice were more a set of values (e.g., righting the wrong, fairness, and accountability) rather than an outcome, but these values were largely absent from the current system. Victims commonly felt their involvement in the justice system was tokenism, and that they didn’t genuinely matter or have a voice. Three key themes emerged that can be described as barriers to justice: fear, exclusion, and unfairness. Recommendations include improving education in the justice sector about victims’ needs and the importance of meeting these; and eliminating barriers to justice to encourage reporting of crime, victim participation, and healing for victims.
- Citation: Hargrave, P. (2019). Victims' voices: The justice needs and experiences of New Zealand serious crime victims. Wellington: Victim Support.
- Creative Commons: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives CC BY-NC-ND
- Creator: Petrina Hargrave
- Language: English
- Publisher: Victim Support
- Year: 2019-08-29
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