Victims of Crime Project

For people whose first language is not English, reporting a crime and navigating the justice system can be confusing at best and impossible at worst. A lack of police guidance on how to handle such cases, legal jargon and a lack of interpreters can pose severe barriers to accessing justice.

Together with Harrow Law Centre, we have created the Victims of Crime project, which seeks to address barriers in access to justice and services for victims of crime whose first language is not English. The London borough of Harrow is one of the most diverse in the country and most of its residents were born outside the UK. 

The project’s aims are:  

  • To provide high quality advice to victims through Harrow Law Centre 
  • To raise awareness of available help
  • To establish clearer referral mechanisms with other services; and  
  • To build meaningful relationships with statutory bodies about this work, to bring about longer term change in access to justice for victims of crime. 

We are working with Harrow Law Centre to establish and document a successful model for supporting victims who have English as a second language. Our proof of concept document will be disseminated to other civil society organisations that support victims and to policy makers. 

In this project we will also

  • Conduct research to identify lessons and good practice on sustainable victim care and practical support 
  • Support Harrow Law Centre to reach the Romanian community in Harrow (one of its larger minorities) to raise awareness of our services and seek to better support those in need 
  • Create and disseminate educational material to the police force in Harrow in order to engage them in our work and facilitate a better understanding of needs of victims who do not have English as a first language 
  • Work with other Law Centres to replicate Harrow Law Centre’s model. As local need will vary, we are working with individual Law Centres to identify and shape its local adaptions of the model. 
  • Organise a roundtable in early 2021 with key stakeholders to review recommendations for change emerging from the guide for the third sector, bring voices together (including those of other grantees) and reflect on policy asks.

Reports and other outputs will be published on this page.