The experiences of young witnesses in criminal proceedings in Northern Ireland

Date published: 05 May 2011

In April 2010, the Department of Justice commissioned a research team from Queen's University Belfast and the NSPCC to undertake a study on the experiences of young witnesses giving evidence in courts in Northern Ireland in order to inform policy and practice in this jurisdiction.


 The methodology for the research involved structured interviews with young prosecution witnesses who received a service from the NSPCC’s Young Witness Service (YWS) and their parent/carer, analysis of referral forms completed by YWS staff in relation to the young witnesses who participated in the study and a survey of all YWS volunteers and Children’s Services Practitioners (CSPs). The report of the findings provides a useful insight into the views of young people and also makes a series of recommendations for improving current processes and provisions. 

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