Local Criminal Justice Boards were introduced by the government in 2003 to improve the delivery of justice, secure better outcomes for victims and witnesses, and increase public confidence in the system.
Hertfordshire Criminal Justice Board (HCJB) is a partnership of agencies working to achieve these aims.
We want to create the best environment for victims and witnesses, whether that is improving opportunities for reporting crime, for providing support or making sure the court process is effective at holding offenders to account.
The Board is made up of key agencies and individuals within the local Hertfordshire criminal justice system.
The seven priority areas set out below were agreed at the Annual Planning Day in January 2017 and ratified at the HCJB meeting in June 2017.
In line with the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act, the priorities take account of the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Community Safety and Criminal Justice Plan: Everybody’s Business (2019-2024), agencies own priorities and new legislative requirements.
The priorities will be reviewed by the HCJB in March 2019 to ensure they reflect the key challenges and areas for improvement across the criminal justice system locally.
The seven priority areas are as follows:
Priority 1: Reducing Crime
Priority 2: Criminal Justice System Efficiency: Delivery of Justice
Priority 3: Supporting Victims and Witnesses
Priority 4: Innovation and Digital CJS Efficiency
Priority 5: Early intervention
Priority 6: Rehabilitation of Offenders in the Community
Priority 7: Communications
To see more detail on these priorities please see the Hertfordshire Criminal Justice Board Constitution below.
Hertfordshire Criminal Justice Board Constitution (including Terms of Reference)
The Board aim to meet in public once a year providing an opportunity for the general public to observe and put questions to members of the Board.
The 2021 meeting was held virtually on Wednesday 29th September. The agenda for the meeting can be found here.
Questions asked by members of the public ahead of the meeting were collated and either answered during the meeting or responses were sought afterwards. These responses can be found here.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic the Board did not have a meeting in public in 2020.
The agenda for the 17th June 2019 meeting can be found here.
The 2018 meeting was on the 9th July 2018 in St Albans. The agenda for the meeting can be found here.
Details for the next meeting will be posted here and in the local press.
The HCJB meet once a quarter.
During the coronavirus pandemic the Board has been convened on a more regular basis to ensure issues can be escalated, there is effective communication and information sharing and partners can troubleshoot together. These meetings took place weekly at the beginning of the pandemic and are now held at quarterly intervals, in between the main Board meetings.
The Ministry of Justice has information on its website on lots of criminal justice matters including court appearances and what to expect if you're giving evidence: Your rights and the law Prison and probation services
The Citizens Advice Service has also produced a useful guide to appearing in court as a witness.
Details for the location of courts and probation services in Hertfordshire can be found online.
There are also helpful video guides available to people attending court, including these from the Ministry of Justice (full playlist on link).