Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Left In The Dark

I have no wish to downplay the tragic plight of Madelaine McCann, and there's no doubt of the personal trauma of Madeline's parents, but this comment by Kate McCann irked:
"If your house is burgled you are automatically offered victim support with emotional, practical and legal assistance. If your child goes missing you may get nothing."
Automatically offered emotional, practical and legal assistance? No no no, not true. What happens when you get burgled (as someone who has experienced it many times) is the following response from an uninterested robot on the end of a phone:
"Here's your URN (Unique Reference Number) for insurance purposes, we're not interested, now sod off".
Victim support? Never heard of it. And don't get me started on the victims of disability abuse - the response from the 'robots' is exactly the same.

This is no personal reflection on Mrs McCann but to assume that burglary victims receive victim support help otherwise denied to mothers of missing children - who dominated the news for a not inconsiderable time - is misleading.

1 comment:

  1. Frankly, I would be infuriated to receive "victim support" after a crime. Who wants some sort of local government officer or civil servant to come round and "feel your pain". Sod off! Go and catch the bastards that did it!

    To offer consolation in time of trouble is not the state's job. That is the business of family, friends and ministers of religion.

    I knew people in social work at the time of the Piper Alpha disaster. They worked extremely hard and were utterly exhausted. Whilst practical support was offered to families of victims in a sympathetic manner, a huge amount of the effort was actually spent "counselling" the afflicted rather than sorting out things like claiming pensions and practicalities like that.

    I'm sure it was done conscientiously - but who gave the state a remit to expand its activities to trespass in the area of private grief?