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Attorney General meets ISVAs

 In News

Attorney General describes ISVA Service as ‘Leading Light’ in support services

Notts SVSS Independent Sexual Violence Advisor (ISVA) service had the pleasure of a visit from the Attorney General, Solicitor General and Police Crime Commissioner Caroline Henry.  Both the Attorney General and the Solicitor General travelled to the East Midlands as part of a 3-day ‘Law Tour’ which focused on support services for those affected by sexual violence.

The Office of the Attorney General describes the award-winning ISVA service as the “leading light” of sexual violence support services. The Law Officers spent over an hour talking to the ISVA team discussing the role of an ISVA, funding, court delays and the difference ISVA engagement has made on survivors’ experiences of the criminal justice process.

Photo of Police & Crime Commissioner Henry, ISVA & SSS Manager and the Attorney General holding up cards from the A-Z of Consent
Police and Crime Commissioner Henry, Notts SVSS ISVA & SSS Manager and the Attorney General hold up cards from the A-Z of Consent.

ISVAs make a huge difference

As part of their visit, they heard first hand from a survivor who spoke about the support they received from the ISVA service and the difference it made in relation to staying engaged in the criminal justice process and the support of their emotional wellbeing.  The Law Officers discussed with us the benefits of partnership working and how the ISVA Service has built strong relationships with the Police and Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).  We spoke of the need for more resource and about the work of the Consent Coalition.

Attorney General Victoria Prentis said “Hearing the account of a survivor underlines why support services like Notts SVSS are so important in helping people affected by these horrendous crimes to stay engaged with the process.

“It is easy to overlook how distressing the aftermath of sexual violence can be from reporting the crime to preparation for court and all that comes with it. Having an independent sexual violence advisor on hand to answer questions and give that understanding and support is making a huge difference here in Nottingham.”


Keeping survivors supported and informed is vital

Gemma Malfesi, ISVA and Survivors Support Service Manager said “Our ISVA service knows that the impact of sexual violence is wide ranging and can impact a survivor’s relationships, education, mental health and wellbeing.  We work hard with the police, CPS and other agencies to ensure that processes are as smooth as possible and that survivors are supported and informed throughout the legal journey.

“There is no doubt that deciding to report is a big decision and the Your Journey booklet, created through the Consent Coalition, helps to explore this.  We owe it to survivors to ensure that they have ongoing, robust support whether or not they decide to report.”


Find out more

In Nottingham we are very proud of our award-winning ISVA Service.  The dedicated team have worked very hard to build up strong relationships with Nottinghamshire Police, the CPS and courts, helping survivors keep supported, engaged and informed at all stages of the Criminal Justice Process.  You can find out more about the service on their dedicated page.  The Your Journey guide, created in partnership with the Consent Coalition, helps people find out more about support and reporting options in Nottingham.

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