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The status of victims of crime in South Africa: Developments since 1994

Naudé, Beaty
June 4, 2015

Source: (2001) In Victim policies and criminal justice on the road to restorative justice: Essays in honour of Tony Peters, ed. E. Fattah and S. Parmentier, 35-57. With an introduction by E. Fattah and S. Parmentier. Leuven, Belgium: Leuven University Press.

Beaty Naude points to the high incidence of crime and violence in South Africa. She traces this in part to the traumatization of large numbers of people and South African society in general due to the extreme violence of South Africa’s recent history. However, the first multiracial democratic elections in April 1994 initiated changes leading to significant socio-political, economic, and legal transformations for South African people and society. Prior to 1994, under apartheid, the rights and needs of crime victims received little attention, and support services for victims were limited, especially from government sources. Naude summarizes the pre-1994 status of crime victims, and then elaborates efforts since 1994 (e.g., the National Crime Prevention Strategy, and the Victim Empowerment Programme) to emphasize rights for victims in the criminal justice system and to develop victim support services through governmental and non-governmental organizations.


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