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Kent police and crime commissioner Ann Barnes praises government re-think on support for families of murder victims

By KentOnline reporter

Kent's crime commissioner has praised a government re-think over funding to families of murder victims.

It comes after Ann Barnes hit out at the decision by the Ministry of Justice to slash funding support in certain cases.

The Kent Police and Crime Commissioner heavily criticised the Ministry of Justice’s proposal to cut funding to the families of people murdered before 2010, leaving them without specialist support to deal with their loss.

Kent police commissioner Ann Barnes has defended the cost of her office

Mrs Barnes asked Damian Green, the MP for Ashford and Minister for Policing, Criminal Justice and Victims to have a rethink.

She said today: "Last month, I was very vocal when I heard about the Government’s plans to cut this support to some families of murder victims. I wrote to Mr Green and also spoke to him about the proposal.

"The issue naturally struck a chord with the people of Kent and I am so pleased that Mr Green has looked at this decision again and made the necessary changes. Thank goodness common sense has prevailed."

In a letter to all 41 Police and Crime Commissioners, the Ministry of Justice confirmed that support arrangements for pre-2010 bereavements will continue, with provisions in place until 2017.

A new national Homicide Service is being commissioned to provide support to those bereaved post-2010.

Mrs Barnes added: "This is absolutely the right decision. It is an example of how Police and Crime Commissioners can help to influence Government decisions for the good of the people they serve."

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