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What has the Ministry of Justice been doing?

Key expenditure and performance findings from the Ministry of Justice Annual Report and Accounts for 2016/17

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Annual Report

Last week, I looked at some of the key issues in the final report from the National Offender Management Service. Today I highlight six things of interest from the Ministry of Justice Annual Report and Accounts for 2016/17 (published 19 July 2017).

1: The MoJ has four strategic priorities

  1. a prison and probation service that reforms offenders;
  2. a modern courts and justice system;
  3. a global Britain that promotes the rule of law; and
  4. a transformed Department that delivers efficiency, value for money and excellent public service.

2: The MoJ spent £9,540m last year

The majority of expenditure is on frontline services. Prisons, probation, youth justice, HMCTS and the Legal Aid Fund account for over 80% of the overall budget.

Staffing is, unsurprisingly the largest cost, accounting for 29% of spend.

3: MoJ performance is measured on seven headline indicators

These are:

  1. The number of escapes from prison and prison escorts;
  2. The number of escapes from contractor escorts;
  3. Assaults on prisoners and assaults on prison staff (rate per 1,000 prisoners);
  4. Rate of drug misuse in prisons as reflected by those testing positive in mandatory drug tests.
  5. One-year proven reoffending rate for adult offenders discharged from prison or commencing a court order;
  6. CRC % completion of community orders & suspended sentence orders; and
  7. NPS % completion of community orders & suspended sentence orders.

Performance on these indicators varied.

Escape numbers were low (7 in-house and 8 from contractors).

Assaults, as regular readers will know, reached their worst ever levels.

Positive MDT drug tests leapt up to 9.3% compared to 7.7%.

One year reoffending rates were down significantly from 35.2% to 33.2% (most recent year refers to July 2014- June 2015)

CRC completion rate was down to 78% from 78.7%.

NPS completion rate was up to 71.5% from 70.9%

4: Criminal court proceedings remain slow

In 2016 it took on average 194 days from original listing in Magistrates’ Court for a Crown Court case to be completed (down from 196 in 2015 year but up from 172 in 2014).


5: The MoJ and its agencies breached personal data legislation on seven occasions

There were other data protection failings but these seven incidents were serious enough to be reported to the Information Commissioner’s Office and related to the personal data of 125 individuals.

6: Seven MoJ staff were paid £150,000 or more

You will see I have taken the BBC benchmark, full table below:



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3 Responses

  1. Yes, how many POs (and other staff) left? What exactly are your retention of experienced officers stats? Recruitment of Pzos and other important staff for prisons/YOIs – takes a whole team

  2. Is it true that due to reduction in administration staff at the moj there are significant delays to patients being discharged from secure mental health hospitals.?

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