Why me? launches new Valuing Victims report
Why me? have launched the latest in our series of Valuing Victims Reports which analyse Ministry of Justice data on the implementation of Restorative Justice across England and Wales. Why me? annually make a Freedom of Information request to the Ministry of Justice to access the data they have been provided by the 42 police areas in England and Wales. This is the seventh in our series of Valuing Victim reports.
Why me? have identified key areas of inconsistency in the data:
- Many entries were incomplete, with some values missing from several areas.
- There were implausibly large regional variations when the data is analysed raising issues of data quality and reliability
- There remains no consistent understanding of what should be counted as a referral, and who should be counted as a person who was supported.
As a result, no meaningful conclusions can be drawn regarding the quality or reach of Restorative Justice provision across England and Wales.
We have therefore provided five practical recommendations to the Ministry of Justice on how the collection of data could be improved to ensure accuracy and consistency across England and Wales. Our key suggestions are as follows:
Recommendation 1 – We recommend that the Ministry of Justice works with the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC) and Police and Crime Commissioners to ensure accurate expenditure reporting on Restorative Justice is provided as a data return for all Police and Crime Commissioner areas for 2022/23.
Recommendation 2 – We recommend that the Ministry of Justice work with the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC) and Police & Crime Commissioners to redefine and clarify the data return for victims supported by Restorative Justice services for 2022/23.
Recommendation 3 – We recommend that the Ministry of Justice work with the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC) and Police & Crime Commissioners to redefine the 2022/23 outcome measures within the data set using the suggestion outlined in our report as a proposal for consultation.
Recommendation 4 – Ministry of Justice to capture data from National Probation Service regions who invest in RJ as an intervention so that the Ministry of Justice can get an overall picture and monitor and evaluate impact.
Recommendation 5 – Public reporting of the data is recommended. Victims of crime and the wider public should have access to performance information on the local provision of Restorative Justice services.
Why me? fully understand, from our meetings and discussion with PCCs, that data collection can be an onerous task for Restorative Justice units particularly if it does not assist service improvements. We also fully recognise that PCCs want access to quality data.
We believe that collecting national data on Restorative Justice services is an important step in ensuring that victims of crime get access to the resources they need. Whilst some improvements have been made to the data collection process, without accurate and comparable data allowing for public accountability, no real progress can be made. Victims of crime deserve better.
If you want to discuss our findings or discuss how to improve data collection in your PCC area, or if you would like a copy of the data we have analysed then please get in touch via our firstname.lastname@example.org email.