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Victims of the mentally ill to have more say in NSW tribunals
Katherine O’Chee | 승인 2019.02.07 14:49

The NSW government has introduced a support service in Parramatta to cater for new laws aimed at giving more voice to individuals victimised by those with cognitive and mental illnesses. 

The $8.5 million Specialist Victims Support Service (SVSS), which opened on Monday, comes after changes to the Victims Rights and Support Act 2013, which now allow submissions to be made to Mental Health Review Tribunal (MHRT) proceedings in NSW regarding the impact a forensic patient’s release would have on a victim. 

“We’ve listened to the concerns of victims and they will now be given the opportunity to be heard and express how it will affect them if the forensic patient is granted leave or released from detention,” Attorney General Mark Speakman said.

“Submissions may include suggested conditions the MHRT could impose on the forensic patient to keep the community safe, such as orders preventing them from visiting certain locations and associating with specific people,” he added. 

The SVSS will allow registered victims to request for information about key hearing dates and case developments, offer private rooms where victims can attend MHRT hearings via video link, and support victims in preparing their submissions to the MHRT.

“The SVSS will work with victims from an early stage in the justice process so they feel safe, understand court and MHRT hearings and can have their voices heard,” Minister for Mental Health Tanya Davies said. 

Katherine O’Chee  edit@hanhodaily.com

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