chapter  8
10 Pages

Bereavement work in the criminal justice system

WithMary Corcoran

This chapter considers the false demarcation that operates in practice between the administration of criminal justice and the inadequacies in the system when faced with managing the personal elements of bereavement. It examines how bereavement work is sidelined from the overall process of justice, despite its essential role. The chapter seeks to redress the analytical gap by examining the many ways in which the voluntary sector performs vital bereavement work both at different junctures in criminal justice procedures and by crossing 'boundaries' in offering support to all parties affected by death. The perception that the criminal justice system is distanced from the emotional losses of the bereaved has been acknowledged as a source of injustice and grievance, encapsulated in arguments that they too have been victimised by the system. Secondary victimisation occurs when the perspectives, needs or involvement of victims or bereaved people are disregarded, which compounds their initial victimisation caused by the original crime.