A new privatised service is being put out to tender by the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for Thames Valley.
The three-year contract is to provide the victim–led restorative justice (RJ) service across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire.
Private firms and voluntary organisations are invited to bid for the contract, and can make joint bids to provide the range of services promoting, coordinating and delivering restorative justice.
Restorative justice is initiated by victims of crime at any time before, during or after any criminal proceedings. It is designed to bring together those harmed by crime with those responsible, to help repair the harm and agree a positive way forward. Supporters say that it can empower victims by making their voices heard, as well as helping perpetrators understand the consequences of their actions.
The successful bid will be announced in early 2015, with the service starting from April 2015.
Anthony Stansfeld, Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley, said: “Supporting those affected by crime is a key priority in my police and crime plan.
“Restorative Justice which has been initiated by victims of crime, rather than by offenders, is a relatively new concept. I am convinced that by increasing the opportunities for victims to request and experience restorative justice, we will greatly assist individuals, and the people around them who have also been affected by the crime, to recover from the experience.
“Restorative justice gives victims the chance to explain to offenders the real impact of their crime, get answers to their questions and can help victims to move on with their lives.
“I am looking to commission a high-quality restorative justice service in the Thames Valley which is tailored to the individual needs of the victim.”
For more details of the Thames Valley Police and Crime Commissioners intentions for commissioning victims services, visit www.thamesvalley-pcc.gov.uk/Partnership/Victims-Services.aspx