Criminal Justice Alliance Awards 2017
DIVERT AND PANORAMA TOP CJA AWARDS 2017
The annual Criminal Justice Alliance Awards, supported by the Hadley Trust, acknowledge organisations or individuals who’ve helped transform the criminal justice pathway or perceptions of the criminal justice pathway, from policing to prisons and probation. The Awards focus on effectiveness, fairness and new models of delivery.
The 2017 CJA Outstanding Organisation of the Year, announced on 9 November, is DIVERT. The project won a contribution of £4,000 towards its work. Judges praised a ‘groundbreaking’ winner for ‘reaching people at a critical moment in their lives’.
Young adults coming into police custody in central London are offered the opportunity to speak to DIVERT’s trained practitioners about their lifestyle, independent from the offence for which they’ve been arrested. It’s the first police custody diversion programme of its kind. DIVERT therefore identifies clear areas of vulnerability that can be addressed during custody, which it uses as a teachable moment. Among 118 young people who’ve engaged with DIVERT the re-offending rate is 7 per cent, 22 per cent less than the average.
Runner-up as Outstanding Organisation of the Year, and winner of a £2,000 prize is Youth Justice Legal Centre, founded in 2015 to help make the criminal justice pathway a fairer place for children. Judges commended YJLC for making a ‘clear and distinct contribution to creating a fairer justice system’.
Named Outstanding Individual of the Year, LJ Flanders is founder of Cell Workout, created during his own prison sentence as a way to stay healthy and maintain mental wellbeing. Judges described LJ as ‘truly inspiring’.
LJ has developed the workout into an intensive two week course focussing on physical development as well as goal setting, resilience and motivation. The course was delivered in HMP Wandsworth in 2016 to over 100 men, most of whom both increased physical fitness and felt more able to take control of keeping fit and healthy for the longer term.
Winner of the Award for Outstanding Journalism of the Year is BBC Panorama for Behind Bars: Prison Undercover, reporter Joe Fenton’s programme filmed inside HMP Northumberland. Judges described the broadcast as both ‘provoking genuine public discussion’ and ‘jolting national complacency about a real crisis’.
A further Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Lucy Perman, Executive Director of theatre company Clean Break. She joined the company, a unique provider of support to women prisoners, in 1997.
The 2017 CJA Awards were presented by Dame Glenys Stacey at a central London reception. Judges included Frances Gibb, Legal Editor of The Times, Jon Collins, Chief Executive of the Magistrates Association, Imtiaz Amin, Chief Executive of the Zahid Mubarek Trust and Key4Life founder and CEO Eva Hamilton.
Further details of the winners, and shortlisted and longlisted organisations and individuals can be found in What Good Looks Like.