Press release

Charities benefiting from expert reoffending analysis

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

A new service will provide valuable reoffending data for up to 150 organisations over the pilot year so they can see what interventions work to reduce reoffending.

The Justice Data Lab pilot is a new statistical service open to all organisations who work with offenders, with particular focus for supporting the Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS), which was launched in April 2013.

Currently too many VCS organisations working with offenders do not have the opportunity to robustly evaluate their success. The 12 month trial was set up to provide these organisations tailored re-offending data for the cohort of offenders they work with. This will help them understand if their interventions are effective at driving down reoffending and identify where they should invest their resources.

As more organisations use this service, it will become an invaluable resource for the VCS, creating a database of what works at reducing reoffending.

Justice Minister Jeremy Wright said:

‘Helping these organisations understand how their work makes the crucial difference between an offender breaking the cycle of crime, or repeating the same mistakes again and again, can transform the criminal justice system.

‘For too long they have been working with a hand tied behind their back, often making a real difference but too often unable to understand how or why. Now they will know where to invest their valuable time and money.

‘I look forward to more VCS organisations using the Justice Data Lab as we build a valuable library of what works when it comes to cutting crime.’

The Government’s Transforming Rehabilitation Reforms will see VCS organisations playing a far greater role in the way offenders are managed in the community, helping to bring down reoffending rates. Providing this data will help these organisations compete to deliver rehabilitation services in the future.

The Ministry of Justice will publish findings from the Justice Data Lab later this year, including information about the individual organisations, the programme and their reoffending data, for example maintaining family contact to change offending behaviour or the use of mentoring to provide guidance and support. This will allow those working with offenders to clearly see what works, creating a library of best practice.

In January this year the Justice Secretary announced radical reforms to the rehabilitation of offenders aimed at tackling our stubbornly high reoffending rates.

Key elements of the reforms are:

  • Introducing a minimum 12 months supervision and rehabilitation for all offenders on release from prison;
  • creating a nationwide network of 70 resettlement prisons so nearly all offenders are released into the area in which they will live and be supervised; and
  • creating a new public sector National Probation Service tasked with protecting the public from the most dangerous offenders.

The new approach will see providers only paid in full if they are successful at reducing reoffending, making taxpayer’s money work harder.

Notes to editors:

  1. The statistical bulletin is official statistics and subject to usual restrictions, we are unable to provide figures prior to this. A date for publication will be announced in due course.

  2. See more information about the Justice Data Lab and a guide on how to submit data.

  3. Latest reoffending statistics show more than 58 per cent of short-sentenced offenders reoffend within 12 months of release. The proven reoffending data was published on 25 July 2013.

  4. For more information please contact the MOJ press office on, 020 3334 3536.