The current model for Community Justice came into operation on 1 April 2017, underpinned by the Community Justice (Scotland) Act 2016 (the Act), which places duties on a group of statutory partners to engage in community justice planning and to report against a set of nationally-determined outcomes.
The Act also established Community Justice Scotland and required Scottish Ministers to produce a National Strategy for Community Justice (the strategy), an Outcomes, Performance and Improvement Framework (OPIF) and guidance to support the delivery of the new model.
As per section 16 of the Act, Scottish Ministers must review the current strategy by 24 November 2021. Following this review, Scottish Ministers have committed to developing a new strategy, and it is expected that this will be published in Spring 2022, following a public consultation exercise in due course. This targeted consultation forms part of the engagement exercise for the review of the strategy.
The purpose of each of the three documents mentioned above is set out below for further context:
National Strategy for Community Justice: provides a shared vision to help partners and communities work together effectively to drive improvement in community justice. As per section 15(2) of the Act:
The strategy may contain such material in relation to community justice as the Scottish Ministers consider appropriate, including in particular—
(a) a statement of the aims of community justice,
(b) action that the Scottish Ministers propose to take, or consider that others should take, to achieve, or support the achievement of, those aims,
(c) action that the Scottish Ministers consider that others should take to facilitate access to relevant general services by persons who have been convicted of an offence following the release of such persons from imprisonment or detention in a penal institution.
Outcomes, performance and improvement framework: determines the outcomes and indicators used to measure performance across community justice partners, and is a tool designed to support improvement across the community justice landscape. As per section 17(2) of the Act:
The framework is to set out—
(a) outcomes in relation to community justice which are to be achieved in the area of each local authority (called “nationally determined outcomes”), and
(b) indicators to be used to measure performance in achieving the outcomes (called “national indicators”).
Statutory guidance: to support the statutory community justice partners to understand their roles arising from the Act.
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