Draft Heads of the Criminal Justice (Victims of Crime) Bill 2015 needs to be strengthened if it is to comply with the Victims’ Directive

The Minister for Justice and Equality held a round table discussion on the 19th of May 2015, in the Department of Justice on the draft scheme of the Criminal Justice (Victims of Crime) Bill 2015. Maria McDonald BL spoke on the draft scheme and whether it is compliance with the Victims’ Directive.

What is clear is that the Draft Heads of the Criminal Justice (Victims of Crime) Bill 2015 needs to be strengthened if it is to comply with the Victims’ DirectiveIMG_8613. Currently the Draft Heads of Bill limits the rights under the Directive in certain instances. Furthermore, it does not deal with restorative justice.

It remains to be seen whether the recommendations which I made will be included in the draft legislation. However, the Minister for Justice & Equality appeared to be genuinely interested in relation to the implementation of the Victims Directive into Irish law.

Picture: from L to R – Minister for Justice & Equality, Frances Fitzgerald, Ms. Ellen O’Malley-Dunlop, Dublin Rape Crisis Centre, Ms. Maria McDonald BL, Barrister & VRA, Garda Commissioner, Nóirín O’Sullivan.

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