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Evaluation of SV pilot court; changes to be permanent in Auckland and Whangārei

August 23, 2019 at 12:49 PM

From the NZFVC

The District Court has released the evaluation report for the sexual violence court pilot in Auckland and Whangārei.

The findings from the evaluation confirm a number of successful outcomes, including shorter wait times for cases to go to trial and reduced trauma to complainants (victims/survivors).

Key findings from the evaluation are outlined in a media release by Acting Chief District Court Judge John Walker:

    • "Pilot cases progress more efficiently, faster and with fewer delays overall;
    • Stakeholders perceive that trial quality has improved, with fewer adjournments and better quality evidence;
    • Complainants are generally better prepared for attending trial, reducing anxiety;
    • Judges are more alert to unacceptable questioning and intervene more frequently;
    • Judges are more actively involved with cases from an earlier stage, and case review hearings are considerably more thorough and comprehensive;
    • Giving defendants firm trial dates earlier is resulting in more and earlier guilty pleas;
    • Dedicated case managers are critical to success; and
    • There is unanimous support among stakeholders to roll the pilot model out nationally."

The full report, Sexual Violence Court Pilot Evaluation Report (2019), explores the impacts of the pilot in several areas, including preparing and starting the pilot, case management, trial management and wider impacts of the pilot.

Category: Courts