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News Archives: Index

October 7, 2010: Probation Set For Industrial Action

October 5, 2010: Turning Prisoners Into Taxpayers

October 4, 2010: Murder Changes Now In Force

September 20, 2010: Probation Programmes Face Cuts

August 24, 2010: Victorian Poor Law Records Online

August 10, 2010: Justice Job Cuts

July 28, 2010: Prison Violence Growing

July 22, 2010: Police Numbers: Latest Figures

July 22, 2010: New Jurisdiction Rules

July 16, 2010: CCJS On Prison And Probation Spending Under Labour

July 15, 2010: Latest Statistics On Violent And Sexual Crime

July 15, 2010: Latest National Crime Figures

July 15, 2010: New Chief Prisons Inspector

July 14, 2010: Hard Times Ahead For Prisons: Anne Owers

July 14, 2010: Prison Does Not Work: Ken Clarke

July 13, 2010: Criminal Justice Reform: Sentencing and Rehabilitation

July 13, 2010: Criminal Justice Reform Priorities

July 12, 2010: What Price Public Protection, Asks Probation Chief Inspector

July 12, 2010: NOMS has failed, says Napo

July 10, 2010: IPCC To Investigate Death of Raoul Moat

July 9, 2010: Women In Prison: New Report

July 9, 2009: Unjust Deserts: Imprisonment for Public Protection

July 8, 2010: Police Search Powers Change

July 7, 2010: Make 'Legal High' Illegal, Says ACMD

July 2, 2010: Failing Children In Prison

July 2, 2010: Police Buried Under a Blizzard of Guidance: HMIC

July 1, 2010: Freedom To Change The Law?

June 30, 2010: A New Outlook On Penal Reform?

June 30, 2010: Revolving Door Of Offending Must Stop, Says Clarke

June 30, 2010: Ken Clarke: Speech on Criminal Justice Reform

June 29, 2010: No More Police Targets

June 26, 2010: Family Intervention Projects Questioned

June 25, 2010: Cutting Criminal Justice

June 24, 2010: Napo on Sex Offenders Report

June 23, 2010: Closing Courts: The Cuts Begin

June 23, 2010: Strategy To Tackle Gangs

June 15, 2010: Courts and Mentally Disordered Offenders

June 8, 2010: Working With Muslims in Prison

June 1, 2010: Your Chance To Nominate a QC

January 26, 2006: Crime Statistics: Major Review Ahead

A major cross-party review of how crime statistics are compiled and published was announced today by Home Secretary Charles Clarke.

The review aims to increase public understanding of crime trends and crime data in England and Wales. Set up in response to a lack of understanding by the public about the levels and type of crime, the review team have been tasked with making recommendations to the Home Secretary on how to provide a measure of crime which is transparent, understood and trusted.

The review's terms of reference are:

To examine the key issues raised by the Statistics Commission about crime statistics and to make practical recommendations to the Home Secretary as to what changes are needed to address those issues.

These recommendations will need to take account of the changes to strengthen the system of official statistics announced by the Chancellor in November, on which further detail will be published shortly.

The Statistics Commission identified in their December 2005interim report  "Crime Statistics: User Perspectives" the following five issues of importance to those who need and use crime information:

  1. public trust in crime data
  2. measures of total crime
  3. measurement of the fear of crime
  4. international comparisons
  5. getting the best from data held by local police forces

It will be undertaken by an independent group of opposition party nominees, leading statisticians and media representatives.  Members will include British Society of Criminology President Professor Tim Newburn; Kate Flannery of Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary;  former Victim Support chief executive Dame Helen Reeves; and Ian Johnston,  of the Association of Chief Police Officers.

Mr Clarke said:

"I have been concerned for some time that Home Office crime statistics have been questioned and challenged. This has got to the point that most people seem confused about what is happening to crime in this country. This is why I have established an independent cross-party group of experts to look at this issue. I have asked the group to feel free to advise me in whatever way they feel appropriate to help us increase public confidence in our measures of crime.

"In terms of the statistics published today, I am encouraged that the British Crime Survey shows significant falls in domestic burglary and vehicle theft. However, as in previous quarters, police recorded violent crime is increasing, as is robbery. It is these increases that are of most concern to the public and why we will not take our eye of the ball when it comes to reducing these types of crimes.

"The Violent Crime Reduction Bill currently before Parliament will give new powers to police and local authorities to tackle violent criminals and ensure they are effectively punished. The recent rises in robbery, whilst understandably concerning, come on the back of the substantial reductions made during the Street Crime Initiative.

"Despite the fact that most crime categories are falling, fear of crime is still too high and public perception is often at odds with reality. That is why we need to look again at the statistics and find out why people do not believe them. I want to get to a situation, on a cross-party basis, where we all agree on how crime in this country is going to be measured and are assured that the statistics are produced in an independent way that commands public credibility."