Caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, Lancashire has seen a backlog which has resulted in cases taking much longer to reach court and victims and their families enduring long wait times to receive justice.
In his first year in post as Deputy PCC Mr Pratt has taken up the role of chair of Lancashire’s Local Criminal Justice Board (LCJB) which brings together criminal justice organisations within Lancashire to support joint working and improve services. The purpose of the LCJB is to reduce crime, harm and risk by increasing the efficiency and credibility of the Criminal Justice System.
Andy Pratt MBE said: “I welcomed the opportunity to meet with James Cartlidge MP and to raise some of the issues we face here in Lancashire.
“Our main concern is ongoing court delays and the impact these have, not only on victims, witnesses and their families, but also the professionals that support them through the court process such as Independent Sexual Violence and Domestic Violence Advisers we commission locally.
“We spoke about the work that is needed to ensure that we have more judges to tackle local backlogs post covid and to improve the availability of barristers.
“While the backlog we have in Lancashire is already reducing, I am pleased to hear that the Ministry of Justice is planning further investments in this area and I have invited James Cartlidge MP to visit Lancashire and meet with local criminal justice agencies to discuss this further.
“Both in my role as Deputy PCC and Chair of the Local Criminal Justice Board, I want to see the best possible service for victims as they go through the criminal justice process and ensuring that cases can go to trial quicker and without undue delays will be an important step forward.”