Home Office scraps plan for merger

The Home Office has dropped a plan to merge the five criminal justice inspectorates, following warnings they would end the independence of the chief inspector of prisons.

Following that the Home Office issued a statement saying it had agreed to drop the plans from the Police and Justice Bill  in favour of “enhanced” working between the inspectorates.

The plan to combine the inspectorates of prisons, probation, police, Crown Prosecution Service and court administration into one watchdog were heavily defeated in the House of Lords.

The Prison Reform Trust welcomed the move. Policy director Will Higham said the merger was “ill-conceived and fundamentally flawed”, and in particular risked preventing the inspectorate of prisons from monitoring matters that fell outside the criminal justice remit, such as health.


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