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Engaging Communities in Criminal Justice

Volume 498: debated on Monday 26 October 2009

To ask the Solicitor-General what plans the Government have for developing the role of the community prosecutor referred to in Engaging Communities in Criminal Justice. (295044)

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is testing the Community Prosecutor approach over a 12-month period from June 2009 in 49 pathfinder locations. The approach will be evaluated during the testing period, with plans for national roll-out to be developed thereafter.

The development of a Community Prosecutor approach is a major new initiative for the CPS, one which brings together work which is already happening in many CPS areas, together with new ideas about how modern prosecutors should engage with communities. The initiative will allow the CPS to work together with the police and our other partners to make communities safer and raise public confidence in the services we provide.

The pathfinder locations are testing three strands to the Community Prosecutor approach, which are:

enabling prosecutors to make more 'community-aware casework decisions;

greater CPS involvement in 'problem-solving' of local crime and disorder priorities; and

increased CPS visibility to communities and other agencies responding to local crime and disorder concerns.

The Community Prosecutor approach is one of the proposals contained in the 'Engaging Communities in Criminal Justice' Green Paper launched on 29 April 2009.