We’ve seen great examples of police providing excellent support to victims of crime with mental health problems, and have showcased these in our new good practice guide, Police and mental health: How to get it right locally.
However, we also know from Victim Support’s report, At risk, yet dismissed, that too many people are still not believed and have their experience dismissed. The report provides key recommendations on how to plan your victim support services.
Greater awareness training can help you and your colleagues better understand that people with mental health problems are at increased risk of being victims and provide you with the skills to identify and respond to their needs appropriately.
Someone with a mental health problem needs to feel confident that they’ll be taken seriously and treated properly when they report a crime.
If someone discloses their mental health problem, your response needs to be sensitive and understanding, and where possible reasonable adjustments should be made.
PCCs need to prioritise mental health and ensure that the views of people with mental health problems are taken into account.
By working in partnership with other services you can help the victim get the support they need and prevent them being a victim in the future.