All 1 Lindsay Hoyle contributions to the Victims and Prisoners Act 2024

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Mon 15th May 2023

Victims and Prisoners Bill Debate

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Department: Ministry of Justice

Victims and Prisoners Bill

Lindsay Hoyle Excerpts
2nd reading
Monday 15th May 2023

(1 year, 1 month ago)

Commons Chamber
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Alex Chalk Portrait Alex Chalk
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My hon. Friend makes an incredibly important point. She mentions Hope Street, and the Nelson Trust, which I have visited, does excellent work in this regard. I think we do always have to remember that the job of Government is to ensure that the decision of the court can be upheld.

In other words, a court will of course consider the evidence from the prosecution at a sentencing hearing about what has taken place, will hear a plea in mitigation about the impact on the defendant of incarceration—including the impact on friends and children, their future and so on—and will then reach a decision based on all those matters about the correct sentence. So while I do not seek to downplay any of the really important points my hon. Friend mentioned, we need to do our bit within the criminal justice system to give effect to the order of the court, but to ensure it is done in a way that is humane and understands that there are family considerations.

We want prisoners to serve their time, but to be rehabilitated, and one of the critical ways of being rehabilitated is to ensure that family relationships endure. That is why there has been so much investment in courts in areas such technology to ensure prisoners can keep in contact with the outside, so that when they leave having repaid their debt to society they are in a position to pick up those important relationships.

In closing, I want to put on record my thanks to all who have helped to shape this Bill, in particular the victims who shared their stories and contributed to our consultation. I also pay tribute to my predecessors my right hon. Friends the Members for Esher and Walton (Dominic Raab) and for Great Yarmouth (Brandon Lewis) and my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for South Swindon (Sir Robert Buckland) for the parts they have played in advancing this Bill.

These measures will help ensure that every victim, from the Telford teenagers I mentioned to the elderly victim of confidence fraud, secures the service from our justice system that they deserve. From the moment of report to the moment of conviction, and indeed beyond if required, victims’ interests must be paramount. That is how justice is done, and I commend this Bill to the House.

Lindsay Hoyle Portrait Mr Speaker
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I call the shadow Secretary of State.