EXIT SITE

Blog | 11 July 2022

The ISVA Team Blog

Hello from the Adult ISVA Team here at Survivors' Network, and welcome to our new blog!

ISVA stands for ‘Independent Sexual Violence Advisor’.

We support survivors of sexual violence or abuse who are thinking of, or already have, reported their experiences to the police. Our role is to support you through the criminal justice process.  

For many people the Criminal Justice System can be very complicated and difficult to understand. So, we have decided to start a blog where we can share our understanding of it and break it down into easy-to-understand chunks.

Let’s start with the recent Criminal Justice Joint Inspection (CJJI) looking at how the Criminal Justice System in England and Wales responds to survivors of rape. Click to read part 1 and part 2 of this report.

Over the next few weeks, we will break down and explain this report in 3 bitesize blog posts. Here’s the first!

Edition 1: Why is there a Criminal Justice Joint Inspection (CJJI) looking at how survivors of rape are responded to?

To answer this question we first need some background information…

 

What is the Criminal Justice System?  

The Criminal Justice System is made up of 4 services:  

  1. The Police 
  2. The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS)- this is a body of lawyers who act on behalf of the government to prosecute criminal cases, like rape and sexual abuse 
  3. The Prison Service 
  4. The Probation Service 

 

Who reviews the work of these services?  

The 4 criminal justice services are inspected, monitored and evaluated by 4 inspectorates. These inspectorates make sure that the 4 services are working effectively and in a way that is fair.  

Service  Inspectorate 
The Police  Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) 
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS)  Her Majesty’s Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate (HMCPSI) 
The Prison Service  Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons (HMI Prisons) 
The Probation Service  Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Probation (HMI Probation) 

 

What is a Criminal Justice Joint Inspection (CJJI)? 

A Criminal Justice Joint Inspection (CJJI) happens when 2 or more of the 4 inspectorates work together, to look at problems that… 

  1. involve more than one criminal justice service and, 
  2. have a direct impact on the public who use the Criminal Justice System. 

 

Why is there a Criminal Justice Joint Inspection (CJJI) looking at how survivors of rape are responded to? 

There are currently many problems with how the Criminal Justice System deals with reports of rape. And these problems… 

  1. involve both the Police and Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) 
  2. have a direct impact on survivors of sexual violence who use the justice system.  

So, the inspectorates for the Police (the HMIC) and Crown Prosecution Service (the HMCPSI) were called in to carry out a Criminal Justice Joint Inspection (CJJI).  

They have now completed their inspection and produced a two-part report looking at how the Criminal Justice System in England and Wales responds to survivors of rape.  

 

In our next blog post we will be looking at part 1 of this report.