A follow-up review of inspections recommendations

Publication: 03/04/14
The Handling of Complaints by the Criminal Justice System
Inspectorate reports on handling of complaints by the criminal justice system

Current arrangements to handle complaints within the criminal justice system examined by Criminal Justice Inspection Northern Ireland (CJI) have been found to be operating efficiently and effectively.

"This short follow-up review of how complaints are handled by the criminal justice system published today (3 April 2014) found information generated as a result of complaints was being used to further develop services and incorporated into organisational learning," said the Chief Inspector of Criminal Justice in Northern Ireland Brendan McGuigan.

Inspectors found notable good practice in relation to the handling of complaints within the Probation Board for Northern Ireland with a recent review of complaints procedures accompanied by extensive update training and clear guidance provided across the organisation.


This inspection suggests two areas for improvement which if implemented would further strengthen existing arrangements.


"With the exception of complaints against the police, which are handled by the Office of the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland, the collection of section 75 data regarding complainants is not established as routine practice in any of the criminal justice organisations inspected as part of this work," said Mr McGuigan.


"Inspectors believe the collection of this information would enable a more comprehensive analysis of data to be completed.


"In addition Inspectors believe that criminal justice organisations would benefit from benchmarking their performance on the handling of complaints against that of other similar organisations located in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland," said Mr McGuigan.