Press Release – Council approves the Proposal on establishing minimum standards for victims of crime
04.10.2012, 18:22 (CET)
The Council of the European Union today took a great step in ensuring fundamental protection to victims across the EU by adopting, as an ‘A’ point, the Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing minimum standards on the rights, support and protection of victims of crime. The Directive aims to effectively secure greater protection to victims of a variety of crimes by providing them with a number of rights, including access to free victim specialist support services, interpretation and translation service.

The Directive was adopted today by the Council as an “A” item, which means that it was a dossier already agreed on, thereby enabling it to be formally adopted without further debate. The adoption of the Directive reflects all the great work put in by the Polish, Danish and Cyprus Presidencies who have successfully negotiated this file within the Council and with the European Parliament. The European Parliament, during its first reading vote earlier this month, expressed its overwhelming support for the Directive, further confirming the view that this new piece of legislation is essential in harmonizing EU criminal law for victims of crime.

The aim of this Directive is to ensure that the 75 million people who fall victim to crime every year in the EU and their family members are provided with the same basic rights, treated with respect by police and judicial authorities and have the support they deserve in every Member State. Essentially, it will pave the way for all victims, irrespective of where they are in the EU, to be provided with access to a variety of rights, including free victim specialist support services, interpretation and translation service, and will have their specific needs individually assessed. The Directive effectively ensures greater protection by addressing all types of victims, regardless of their personal characteristics and vulnerable status, who may suffer from a variety of crimes, whether this includes terrorism, robbery, human trafficking or rape.  

Member States will have three years after the entry into force of the directive to adopt the necessary national provisions. The United Kingdom and Ireland have decided to opt-in in the adoption of this directive. Denmark is not taking part and will not be bound by it or be subject to its application.

Presidency Spokesperson in Brussels
Nikos Christodoulides

Coreper II

Telephone: +32 27395152
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