The EU Victims’ Rights Campaign ‘keep your eyes open’ has just been launched in 10 EU Member States. Countries include Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Poland, Romania and Slovakia. Special focus is put on victims of five types of crime – gender-based violence, anti-LGBTIQ hate crime, xenophobic hate crime, violence against children, and violence against a person. See campaign website.
La Strada International supports the campaign and hopes that the Campaign will provide for a safe environment for victims to report crime. Many EU countries still do not have effective complaint and safe reporting mechanisms in place, due to which victims can face losing employment or housing, as well as deportation or detention when reporting crime.
The EU campaign to raise awareness about victims’ rights and to promote specialist support and protection for crime victims, was foreseen in the EU Victims’ Rights Strategy 2020-2025, which outlines actions to be taken at EU, national and civil society levels. The Strategy presents five key priorities: (i) effective communication with victims and a safe environment for victims to report crime; (ii) improving support and protection to the most vulnerable victims; (iii) facilitating victims’ access to compensation; (iv) strengthening cooperation and coordination among all relevant actors; and lastly (v) strengthening the international dimension of victims’ rights.