About ASSC

About Us

Accompaniment Support Service for Children (A.S.S.C.) was set up in 2020 to address the needs of young people as they negotiate their way through the Criminal Justice System. Our service provides accompaniment and advocacy for young people and their families at different stages through the justice system. With our support, we help ensure that this happens without re-traumatisation or re-victimisation and that young people are treated with compassion and dignity.

A.S.S.C. was set up as there was no dedicated service for children during what is often a stressful and overwhelming experience for young people and victim support is a right under both Irish and EU legislation. We are the only organisation in Ireland committed to safeguarding children during criminal proceedings, adhering to the guidelines of the Children’s First Act 2015.

A.S.S.C. is a not-for-profit charity and is governed by a voluntary Board of Trustees. The day-to-day running of the organisation is conducted by two Senior Directors. The founding members of A.S.S.C. are Grace Jordan, Eve Farrelly & Lynette Bradshaw.

 

A.S.S.C. is delighted to be working in partnership and to be supported by the Department of Justice.

Our Vision

A.S.S.C.’s vision is a child-friendly justice system throughout the country that supports and gives a voice to all child victims of crime and witnesses to crime, along with their families, regardless of means, race, ethnicity, ability, gender, sexual orientation, religion, age or location.

Our Mission

Our mission is to provide children, young people and their families with accompaniment, support and advocacy services, giving them a voice to exercise their rights as they negotiate their way through the criminal justice system.

Our Values

A.S.S.C. values the concept of “child–friendly justice”, guided by a child-centred and client-led approach, facilitating a culture of transparent communication and support for young people and their families. This principle permeates each level of our organisation to include our young clients and their families, our volunteers and staff, our Board of Management, and our partners and other stakeholders.

A.S.S.C. recognises the significant value of effective multi-disciplinary work in providing services to children and young people who are victims of crime or have witnessed crime. We value collaboration with all stakeholders promoting similar values to ours.

Our Aims

The Charity’s main aim is to provide support for all young people and their families as they negotiate their way through the criminal justice system in Ireland.

We will achieve this by operating a Forensic and Court Accompaniment Support Service and Advocacy service. This can be provided directly before, during and directly after their time in the criminal justice system.

A.S.S.C. recognises the continued development of the rights of young victims of crime, now embedded in the Criminal Justice (Victims of Crime) Act 2017, which can be found here.

A.S.S.C. wishes to promote a cultural shift in the development of “child-friendly justice” by providing central key services for child victims of crime. A.S.S.C. looks forward to our ongoing partnership with the Department of Justice through this journey of providing indispensable support for young people and their families.

A Little History of Lady Justice

Lady Justice is also known as the Roman goddess of Justice. She symbolises the moral force of judicial systems. Representing justice, she wears a blindfold for objectivity of the law. For a system free of bias and prejudice; not letting outside factors of social class, wealth, and fame interfere. The scale she holds illustrates the obligation of the law to weigh up the evidence presented in court. The sword is representative of the enforcement of justice and punishment. A double-edged blade signifies both punishment and from defence the law. She holds the sword lower than the scales because punishment can only happen after all evidence is weighed. A snake and a book lying at her feet; the snake representing evil and the book representing the constitution which is the foundation of Irish Judicial Systems

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