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This book examines the changing role of victims of crime in the Irish criminal process. It documents the variety of ways in which victims of crime are now being written into the criminal process discourse and practice in Ireland, while taking account of existing challenges. The book seeks to show how the justice system is emerging from hegemonic dominance and examines the conditions which have made their re-emergence possible and the commitments, practices and strategic priorities shaping this inclusionary momentum. It demonstrates how the paradigm of prosecuting and investigating crime moved from an intensely local, unstructured and victim-precipitated arrangement to a structured, adversarial, state-monopolised event where the accused was largely silenced and the victim was rendered invisible. The book documents the black-letter, technocratic details of how victims have been juridically provided for since the late 1980s in Ireland. It then focuses on service rights which complement the legal rights which victims of crime have been afforded in Ireland. The book also charts the challenges which continue to face service users, providers and the wider criminal justice sector in the delivery of services which are responsive to the needs of victims and meet increased demands under the EU Directive on Victims' Rights. Innovative policy options adopted in other jurisdictions, including the creation of an Ombudsman for Victims of Crime and measures to unify service provision within the sector, including Witness Care Units, are also explored.

Derek Birrell

area embraced the area of law and order and actions of the security forces. As direct rule developed some of the new institutions and procedures closely followed practice in Great Britain whereas others were to be more specifically tailored to suit Northern Ireland conditions. The Northern Ireland Ombudsman The introduction of an Ombudsman, an idea introduced in Great Britain in 1967, reflected an approach based on copying UK legislation. The Northern Ireland Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration (PCA) was set up to investigate complaints from individuals who

in Direct rule and the governance of Northern Ireland
Margaret Brazier
Emma Cave

in which that might be achieved. When there is an injury to health, some seek financial compensation, and bring a clinical negligence claim (examined in Chapters 7 and 8 ). Many others simply want an explanation and an assurance that the same mistake will not be repeated. One case example published by the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman 1 tells of Mrs F who had a blood test that revealed post-operative infection. Her deteriorating condition was monitored, but the consultant who operated on her did not review the case and the severity of her condition

in Medicine, patients and the law (sixth edition)
Abstract only
Alex Mold

reform of complaints procedures, the second area of focus of this chapter. Complaints mechanisms in hospitals and family practitioner services were re-examined and reinforced, partly as a result of consumer group pressure. Finally, the capacity of the patient to complain was further strengthened by the introduction of the Health Service Commissioner, or the Ombudsman, in 1973. The creation of an independent authority to which complainants could appeal had long been a goal for patient-consumer organisations, and groups such as the PA hailed the establishment of the

in Making the patient-consumer
Past, present and future
Eithne FitzGerald
John Carroll
, and
Peter Tyndall

his experience with use of the legislation, as a political tool in Opposition and, later, in government, in receipt of FOI requests. Finally, the Information Commissioner and Ombudsman, Peter Tyndall, gives his impression of what FOI legislation has achieved to date and the challenges remaining for an effective FOI regime in the future. Eithne FitzGerald Ending the culture of secrecy: what we wanted to achieve when we introduced the original FOI legislation The Freedom of Information Act 1997 had two key objectives  – to open the workings of government and the

in Ireland and the Freedom of Information Act
Abstract only
Bill Jones

further action. Ombudsman Should citizens wish to seek redress against a council, they can take a case to court, for example in the event of injury or loss of income. Or they can refer their case to the Commissioner for Local Government or ‘Ombudsman’. The ethical code is not meant to replace this officer, who exists to investigate cases of bad judgement or inefficiency. Economic development The Local Government Act 2000 gave local authorities the power to promote the social and economic well-being of their residents, as well as the environmental quality of the

in British politics today
Shane Kilcommins
Susan Leahy
Kathleen Moore Walsh
, and
Eimear Spain

disillusionment and further trauma through engagement with the system are documented, focusing on the potential to minimise risk through comprehensive training programmes designed to enable front-line workers to provide a sensitive and compassionate service to victims. Innovative policy options adopted in other jurisdictions, including the creation of an Ombudsman for Victims of Crime and measures to unify service provision within the sector, including Witness Care Units, are also explored. It is hoped that the significant developments in the creation of a more just and

in The victim in the Irish criminal process
The Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission and Garda accountability
Vicky Conway

and operation of the criminal justice system. The events in Donegal were the final catalyst in the reform of the Garda Síochána Complaints Board (GSCB) and the establishment of the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC) in 2007. This chapter explores that change and analyses its significance. First, its establishment is contextualised with critical discussion of police governance and accountability, paying particular attention to complaints systems and their role in police oversight. Next, a brief review of police complaints systems in Ireland is

in Defining events
Margaret Brazier
Emma Cave
, and
Rob Heywood

receives around 80,000 complaints a year. 4 As we explore below, the system is much criticised. There is inconsistency in how organisations handle complaints and they are too often seen negatively rather than as a learning tool. 5 (4) Complain to the Ombudsman. Final decisions on complaints that have not been resolved locally can progress to the Health Service

in Medicine, patients and the law
Lucy Michael

, the Director of Public Prosecutions and Gardai both said there was no evidence of any kind that she had broken any law. 11 Since 2008, however, the content of Irish print and digital media has been subject to a system of independent regulation overseen by the Office of the Press Ombudsman. Member publications, including all national and regional newsprint media, sign up to the Code of Practice, and complaints can be made about individual articles or individual journalists. The Press Council examines appeals from the Ombudsman and provides

in Immigrants as outsiders in the two Irelands