Victim Service Charter Principles
The Department for Correctional Services (DCS) is committed to being responsible and accountable to meeting the rights and needs of victims of crime.
To fulfil this commitment, our approach to service delivery and sustaining respectful relationships are sought to be achieved through the following service principles.
Victims of crime can expect:
Recognition of victims’ rights
- DCS acknowledges and supports victims’ rights and the principles governing how victims of crime are to be treated.
- DCS ensures that personal information is kept confidential in accordance with relevant legislation.
- Victims can expect to be informed of their rights and be provided with guidance as to how to exercise their rights.
- Victims can expect to be provided with timely, accurate and relevant information about a prisoner in accordance with Section 85D of the Correctional Services Act 1982.
To be treated with fairness, dignity and respect
- DCS upholds and maintains integrity, respect and accountability in our dealings with victims.
- DCS staff will act responsibly and with sensitivity when dealing with victim related matters; giving due regard to victims’ protection, safety, rights and individual needs.
- DCS staff will provide an appropriate response to individual needs, with an understanding of cultural sensitivities that may affect family, gender, religion or specific cultural backgrounds.
To feel safe and protected
- DCS will prioritise public protection through the use of strategies designed to assess and manage risk.
- DCS will carry out and enforce sentences in accordance with the courts’ orders.
- DCS will take reasonable steps to protect victims from unlawful or preventable contact with the prisoner or offender whilst under the custody or supervision of the Department’s staff.
- In the event of an significant incident, DCS staff will, alert Registered Victims to ensure their safety and protection.
To have a voice and be heard
- Victims will be given an opportunity to express concerns and to have those concerns taken into account when DCS is making decisions.
- Victims will be provided with the opportunity to make submissions to the Parole Board of South Australia concerning the offender’s application for release on parole; and receive written advice on any conditions of release that relate to victims and their families.
- DCS will acknowledge and address in the best possible way, the concerns and needs, as expressed by the victim
- Victims will receive informed advice and be referred to appropriate support services in accordance with their needs and concerns.
Easy access to services
- DCS staff will clarify services that Registered Victims can reasonably expect, including staff support and guidance in relation to understanding Departmental processes
- DCS staff will be flexible in the provision of information (i.e. via telephone, electronically, written correspondence and/or via a nominated third party), as requested
- The Victim Services Unit is responsible for the promotion of the Victims Charter within DCS and externally.
To provide feedback or make a complaint
- DCS will welcome any feedback via telephone, electronically or by written correspondence.
- Expressed concerns are to be acknowledged and dealt with thoroughly in order to resolve issues, where possible.
- That any complaints received against the Department will be dealt with professionally, objectively and in a prompt and courteous manner.
- Victims will be provided with information on the grievance management process, including contact details of an independent complaints body.