Victim Needs Analysis (VNA) – 2021

Victims of crime and those affected by crimes impacts are a fundamental focus within policing and for the Office of Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC). Every OPCC must be a champion for victims as per their statutory obligations.

In order to further fulfil this commitment a Victim Needs Analysis (VNA) was carried out to help understand the needs and issues for individuals and communities across Bedfordshire. It has been five years since the last VNA was published in 2016. Given the duty to commission victim services that provide victims with the best support, it is absolutely vital that the OPCC has a well-rounded understanding of victims’ needs and the issues that they face locally in comparison to the national context, and any key changes since the last VNA was released. This 2021 Bedfordshire OPCC Victims’ Needs Analysis (VNA) set out to achieve just that.

Primary goals of this Victims’ Needs Analysis:-

To provide:

  • an intelligence lead and evidence-based guide to further aid the commissioning of future victim services
  • a strategic overview of national policy and the implications for local areas.
  •  review of national and local data to understand key themes and trends relating to crime and victims and the demand on services.
  • a strategic overview of local Community Safety Partnership and Police priorities.
  • an overview of current service provision, identifying good practice and identify gaps.
  • a strong understanding of victims needs for the newly elected PCC later this year.

A literature review of key national policy was carried out including existing, new, updated and coming into effect in future. Quantitative and qualitative data was assessed and where appropriate compared against national or similar force data. This included recorded crime statistics, victim surveys and victim police complaints information. Victim engagement was paramount in completing the bespoke survey which collected 296 responses to questions relating to key areas of research for the VNA. Key partner contribution was also sought from Bedfordshire Police, The Ministry of Justice and the charitable sector.

This Victims’ Needs Analysis has designed a series of 28 recommendations in response to areas of change required, covering areas such as; process changes, cultural reviews and approach of commissioned services across partnerships. The recommendations have been designed to be delivered, monitored and completed so that the contributors to this work can be assured of action.