The Justice (Sexual Offences and Trafficking Victims) Act (Northern Ireland) 2022 follows recommendations made by Sir John Gillen in his review into the law around serious sexual offences in Northern Ireland.
It includes new provisions to safeguard the privacy and anonymity of victims of sexual offences and suspects in sexual offence cases.
“The commencement of these parts of this legislation marks another stage in the delivery of the protections Naomi Long pledged she'd bring in when in post as Justice Minister,” said East Antrim MLA Mr Dickson.
“I hope it strengthens protections for those who are most in need of it, namely the victims in these sexual offence cases. Excluding the public in serious cases in particular will also give confidence to victims.
“My thanks go to Sir John for his review, Naomi Long for bringing this legislation forward and the Department of Justice for working on it. I hope the most vulnerable in our society will feel strengthened today as a result.”