Keep up-to-date with drugs and crime

The latest research, policy, practice and opinion on our criminal justice and drug & alcohol treatment systems

A collections of apps and other innovations in the criminal justice and substance misuse sectors.

Innovation Showcase

Digital revolution

The main purpose of this blog is to keep readers up-to-date with new developments in the criminal justice and substance misuse sectors. Posts typically deal with new policy, research and practice developments.

Since the blog was launched in 2011, the digital revolution has picked up pace:

Apps which have completely changed the way in which we communicate, find our news and measure our fitness are now starting to infiltrate our working world. The first products were basic and were too clunky to be adopted in the real world. Recent developments are not only much more fit-for-purpose but are starting to change the ways criminal justice and drug and alcohol professionals work and the way in which they interact with their clients and the general public.


In order to keep up with these new developments, I’ve launched this new section of the site which I’m calling: “The Innovation Showcase” with the purpose of:

  1. Assembling all the best apps and other innovations in one place
  2. Reviewing their features and assessing their effectiveness
  3. Encouraging readers to feedback their own experiences and suggest other innovations to review.

The showcase is divided into three main sections: criminal justice; substance misuse; and other/miscellany  – new innovations are featured in sub-categories under each section.

For every app or other innovation, there is a brief word description with a link to a full review.

Please Email me with any ideas of innovations that should be featured or any other suggestions on the showcase idea.

Just click on any of the images of the apps or other innovation below for a more detailed overview.

Criminal Justice

YStop app FI

Aimed at young people, the Y-Stop app lets users report their stop and search experiences by video/audio.

Bail algorithm

The US State of New Jersey is piloting a new bail algorithm which mathematically assesses the risk of defendants fleeing or committing a crime before their trial date.

self evident print

This app records, validates and secures evidence. Designed primarily as a crime reporting app, it also lets you secure the evidence in your private account.

The Intervention Hub offers a suite of nine Computerised Cognitive Behavioural Therapy programmes designed to reduce reoffending.


Probation Board for Northern Ireland app designed to promote desistance, it also provides information on PBNI’s victim information scheme.

straightline for showcase

National Prison Radio app provides prisoners with support in their first week after release via 7 high quality films presented by former prisoners.

A suite of apps used in prison and on release provides help with education, employment, health and wellbeing as well as communicatingn between offenders and their supervising probation officers.

This electronic device creates a 2,000ft shield around Guernsey prison that will detect and deflect the remote-controlled drones used to deliver drugs.

Substance Misuse

Uturn App Featured image

Harm reduction app gives emergency care advice for someone who has overdosed on heroin on another opiate.

breaking free1

The app focuses on a range of tools and techniques including mindfulness videos to provide instant help to manage cravings.


A wearable alcohol biosensor which passively tracks alcohol consumption in real time. Samples can be sent from the wrist device to a smartphone.

Non-invasive portable drug screening system takes 10 minutes to find out whether an individual has recently used amphetamines, cannabis, cocaine or opiates.

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