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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

December 3, 2008: Queen's Speech

 In the Queen's Speech, a Policing and Crime Bill was announced:

"A Bill will be brought forward to increase the effectiveness and public accountability of policing, to reduce crime and disorder and enhance airport security.”

The purpose of the Bill is to increase the effectiveness and public accountability of policing, protect particularly vulnerable members of our society including women and children, prevent crime and disorder from taking root in our communities, reduce crime by improving the recovery of criminal assets and international judicial co-operation and enhance security planning at UK airports.

The main benefits of the Bill are to:

  • Increase police accountability and effectiveness by providing a clear and powerful voice for the public through directly elected representatives.
  • Protect the public by facilitating and strengthening collaborative working of police forces at all levels from local neighbourhood policing through to the regional and national levels.
  • Protect vulnerable groups, particularly women and children by tackling demand for prostitution and strengthening arrangements around sex offender prevention orders and foreign travel orders.
  • Prevent low level crime and disorder taking root in our communities by tightening controls around lap dancing clubs and the misuse of alcohol, including the sale of alcohol.
  • Strengthen our ability to fight serious and organized crime through improved recovery of criminal assets and improved international judicial co-operation.
  • Provide greater clarity for all in airport security by improving inter-agency co-operation in establishing airport security arrangements.

The Queen also announced a Coroners and Justice Bill:

“My Government will also bring forward a Bill to deliver a more effective, transparent and responsive justice system for victims, witnesses and the wider public. The Bill would also improve the coroners service, and the process of death certification, and provide increased support for bereaved families, including the families of servicemen and women.”

Since 1997 crime is down by 39%, and the chance of being a victim is at the lowest levels since recording began in 1981. The Ministry of Justice committed in 07/08 £289 million on victim services, including £235 million to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority and £37 million to Victim Support.

The Justice and Coroners Bill will ensure that victims are at the heart of the criminal justice system. It will significantly improve the service bereaved families receive from a reformed coroner system, and introduce a more consistent and transparent sentencing framework. The purpose of the Bill is to reform the justice and coroners systems to deliver a more effective, transparent and responsive service to the public. The main elements of the Bill are:

  • Give vulnerable and intimidated witnesses, including those of gun and gang related violence, the best possible protection, right from the early stages of the criminal justice process; including by re-enacting the provisions of the emergency Criminal Evidence (Witness Anonymity) Act 2008 and introducing a new investigative witness anonymity order to protect witnesses to gang related homicides;
  • Establish a new Sentencing Council for England and Wales which will produce comprehensive guidelines for sentencers, enhancing consistency of sentencing;
  • Introduce a scheme to prevent criminals profiting from exploiting the stories of their crimes;
  • Modernise the law on assisting suicide to help increase public understanding and reassure people that it applies as much on the internet as it does off-line;
  • Reforming the law on homicide, including the abolition of the partial defence of provocation and replacing it with two new partial defences of killing in response to a fear of serious violence;
  • Provide stronger inspection powers for the Information Commissioner to improve public confidence in the way that their data is held and used; and remove barriers to effective data sharing to support improved public services and the fight against crime and terrorism;
  • The introduction of a new death certification system to provide reassurance that there is independent checking of the causes of death;
  • The creation of the office of the Chief Coroner, who will put national standards in place, and monitor compliance with them, and ensure that coroners deliver a charter of services to benefit bereaved families.

The Queen’s Speech takes place each year and forms the central part of the State Opening of Parliament. The speech sets out the Government’s policies and proposed legislative programme for the new parliamentary session. It is given in the presence of members of both Houses.

 Although the speech is delivered by the Queen, the content of the speech is entirely drawn up by the Government and approved by the Cabinet.