This written ministerial statement was laid in the House of Commons on 20 January 2011 by Theresa May, and in the House of Lords by Baroness Neville-Jones.
Secretary of State for the Home Department (Theresa May): I am today announcing a review led by the National Statistician to decide which independent body should have future responsibility for the publication of crime statistics and to oversee the implementation of recommendations last year from the UK Statistics Authority.
I am concerned that our existing measures of crime are confusing and offer the public only a partial picture of the true level of offending. It is in the public interest that we have measures of crime that are clear, meaningful and in which the public can have confidence.
The UK Statistics Authority reported on Barriers to Trust in Crime Statistics and made six recommendations in their report published in May 2010. I welcome the UK Statistics Authority’s report and have given careful consideration to their recommendations to improve public trust in the statistics.
While the Statistics Authority saw no evidence of political interference in crime statistics published by the Home Office, I believe bolder action is needed to more clearly demonstrate their political independence. For that reason, I have decided to move future formal responsibility for the publication of crime statistics to an independent body.
I have asked the National Statistician to provide advice on this together with the future arrangements for the data collection systems that underpin the statistics as part of a wider review of crime statistics that she has agreed to lead. The review will report back by the end of April 2011 so that changes can be implemented from April 2012.
I have placed a copy of the terms of reference for this review in the Library of the House.
Date: Thu Jan 20 10:30:40 GMT 2011