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Good News Story from Catch 22 (Victim First)

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Good News Story – Catch 22 (Victim First)

Situation Framing the situation. What was the state of affairs before any action was taken? What impact was this having on the service user? What were the associated risks?
We were approached by the daughter of a victim whose mother was murdered by their partner.

Although the perpetrator had been convicted and sentenced to 22 years, the daughter still felt she needed some closure and wanted the opportunity to ask the perpetrator questions so that she could move on with her life and try and draw a line under losing her mum.

She had already endured a long high profile court case and given a victim personal statement which she read out in court in front of the perpetrator.

However, she still felt there were questions she wanted to ask so she could feel some closure.

Task What needed to be done? What was your role in the situation? What other agencies were involved?
We met and arranged numerous meeting with the daughter to explain RJ and what it meant. Due to the serious nature of the case, we were conscious of not raising any unnecessary hopes and expectations without approaching the perpetrator and gaining his consent to want to be involved in the RJ process.

We worked with Offender Management Unit and the Prison Psychology Team to secure meetings with the perpetrator once all the necessary risks had been assessed.

Actions How the task was achieved? What action was taken and by whom? What were the specific steps?
Consent was gained from the perpetrator to enter into a full RJ Conference and to meet with the daughter in prison.

We lead the work with the prison in letting them know what was required to meet everyone’s expectations and how to manage the high level on anxieties.

Ground rules and mutual roles and responsibilities were agreed and signed up to by all parties involved including the prison.

Victim First worked in pairs to design the Conference meeting and to make sure everyone knew what was going to be asked at the meeting so they had time to prepare and manage their feelings and work towards moving forward.

Due to the restrictions put in place for Covid 19, the Conference could not go ahead and had to be put on hold a short while before it was due to take place.

All necessary arrangements had been put in place and risks assessed.

By this time everyone was ready but then had to have their hopes and expectations sensitively deescalated and their expectations sensitively managed.

Everyone involved were communicated with and holding measure put in place for a time when the process could look to start moving forward again.

Whilst the daughter was understanding she was disappointed, feeling like she could not draw a line under events and have to wait to move on with her life.

There was also the chance that the perpetrator may have changed his mind and not want to proceed with the process leaving the daughter with unanswered questions.

Outcome What was the result of the above? How did the intervention benefit the service user?
Victim First successfully put measures in place to keep lines of communication open and to answer any questions from either side through the approach set up.

Regular catch ups have been well received in making sure anxieties and expectations are managed and kept in check until a time when the process can start again.

The daughter is happy with the work and support that she has received and said that she, ‘is happy to get the chance to ask questions as she never thought that she would get this far’.



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