Ministry To Deliver On Criminal Justice

The Justice Secretary has pledged that the new Ministry of Justice will deliver better results for the public. But Lord Falconer refused to answer detailed questions about the steps he will take to reduce prison overcrowding which is already at crisis point.

Speaking after an early morning visit to Wormwood Scrubs Prison in west London, Lord Falconer said he intended to strengthen public protection, cut reoffending and enhance the justice system.

It came as the Home Office was split, with its responsibilities for jails, probation and sentencing policy being transferred to a new beefed-up Department of Constitutional Affairs.

Renamed the Ministry of Justice (MoJ), the department faces a severe problem in jails in England and Wales, where the population has reached an all time high of more than 80,300.

Lord Falconer said: “This was a good way to start the Ministry of Justice, demonstrating I hope that the situation of the Ministry of Justice is to get better results for the public. That is its one aim in changing arrangements.

“By better results for the public I mean reducing reoffending, better public protection and a justice system both criminal, family and civil that delivers quicker results.”

Asked about prisons overcrowding, he added: “In terms of details of prison policy I will be making a statement to Parliament later in the day. But this morning the critical point is to say the Ministry of Justice is going to bring better results to the public.”