Yvette Cooper MP, Shadow Home Secretary, responding to the Director of Public Prosecution’s measures aimed at improving the conviction rate for rape in courts in England and Wales, said:
“The announcements made by the DPP this morning are very welcome. But the Home Secretary needs to act too.
"It is very disturbing that, although more allegations of rape have been reported to the police since 2010, the number of convictions has been falling since then.
"Despite years of hard work to tackle rape, the clock has turned back in the last few years. The number of prosecutions and convictions rose until 2010 but they have fallen since then, after this Government stopped treating violence against women as a priority and cut back on specialist police teams and prosecutors.
“Theresa May needs to act and set national standards for police and prosecutors to work together to get justice for victims. This is not just about the CPS and the work of the DPP, everyone needs to see this as an urgent priority.
"Nor is it enough to focus on the conviction rate as a proportion of prosecutions, because the number of prosecutions and the number of police referrals have fallen too. Convictions as a proportion of recorded rapes have fallen since 2010. Something is going badly wrong on Theresa May’s watch.
“The Home Secretary must take responsibility for this growing justice gap, which is letting so many women down, and introduce clear national standards to drive up performance across police forces, as well as in the criminal justice system.”