Crime & Justice

Supreme Court Reform

In the wake of our August paper, Reforming the Supreme Court, Policy Exchange’s Judicial Power Project is pleased to publish a new symposium on Supreme Court reform, in which distinguished legal commentators engage with the question of how and by whom appellate authority should be exercised.

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Online Harms Bill reflects Policy Exchange proposals

A new Online Harms Bill, unveiled this week, includes measures that will force social media companies to delete harmful content or face fines of up to 10 per cent of their turnover and adopt a new code of conduct to protect children on the internet. The legislation builds on recommendations made in Policy Exchange’s 2017 report, The New Netwar, which called for ministers to “put in place a system of financial penalties, administered by the independent regulator, to force company compliance” and urged the adoption of a “more stringent codes of conduct”.

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Daylight Robbery

Research by Policy Exchange finds that fraud and error during the COVID-19 crisis will cost the UK Government in the region of £4.6 billion. The lower bound for the cost of fraud in this crisis is £1.3 billion and the upper bound is £7.9 billion, in light of total projected expenditure of £154.3 billion by the Government (excluding additional expenditure announced in the 8th July 2020 Economic Update). The true value may be closer to the upper bound, due to the higher than usual levels of fraud that normally accompany disaster management.

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Exiting Lockdown

The UK Government should extend its Five Pillar Testing Strategy to a Six Pillar Testing and Tracing Strategy by introducing digital contact tracing as a Sixth Pillar. A Testing and Tracing Strategy should bring together expertise from the Department of Health, NHSX, NHS Digital, Police, Military and the Intelligence Agencies, to create a new independent national 24/7 Testing and Tracing Command Centre.

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Policing a pandemic

The Coronavirus pandemic represents the biggest challenge to UK police since the Second World War, according to Richard Walton, Senior Fellow at Policy Exchange and former Head of Counter-Terrorism Command at the Metropolitan Police. The paper – Policing a pandemic, part of a new series from Policy Exchange examining the policy impact of the coronavirus pandemic – recognises that, in the words of the Chief Medical Officer Prof Chris Whitty, the response of the British public to disasters and emergencies tends to be “extraordinary outbreaks of altruism”. It also notes that some aspects of criminal behaviour are very likely to decrease during periods of social distancing, for example alcohol-related disorderly behaviour, including violence that can occur in and around bars, pubs, nightclubs and restaurants, reducing police demand for emergency response calls. But the paper warns of a minority who will exploit the pandemic for criminal purposes and sets out new challenges that are likely to be faced by the police.

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The Law of the Constitution before the Court

The Supreme Court’s prorogation judgment, Miller/Cherry, was contrary to the settled law of the constitution. This paper, which complements and completes an earlier critique, refutes attempts to deny the judgment’s revolutionary character, attempts that cannot be squared with key facts about prorogation in the run-up to the Bill of Rights 1689, with Erskine May’s Law and Practice of Parliamentary, and with the primary 20th century textbook on the law of the constitution. The paper details the factual misjudgements and injustices at the heart of the Supreme Court’s judgment, and confirms the wisdom of the law of non-justiciability that the judgment casts aside.

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Latest Crime & Justice Publications

Future of Corrections: Exploring the use of electronic monitoring

Future of Corrections: Exploring the use of electronic monitoring

Future of Corrections shows that the current system of tagging is in desperate need of reform. A more effective use of tagging, where police and probation officers are directly involved in keeping track of offenders and recommending to prison governors and the courts which criminals should be tagged, could save hundreds of millions of pounds and help the Coalition achieve its goal of stabilising the prison population by 2015.

Latest Crime & Justice Blogs

Britain’s sink estates can – and must – be turned around

Britain’s sink estates can – and must – be turned around

Gavin Knight, author of our report The Estate We’re In, highlights how deprived estates can be successfully transformed from within by locally-minded, determined and creative individuals who catalyse huge change. Our report calls for politicians from all parties to pledge to turn around the most deprived council estates within the next decade and uses case studies, such as those outlined in the blog, to extract best practice.

Do we need a specific offence of domestic violence?

Do we need a specific offence of domestic violence?

Charlotte McLeod, Policy Exchange’s Crime & Justice Research Fellow, considers whether we need a specific offence of domestic violence. Charlotte argues that a new offence would require extensive consultation, legal expertise and a continued commitment to tackle it.

Court closures may not be a vote winner, but they could hold the key to improving our justice system and meeting budget targets

Court closures may not be a vote winner, but they could hold the key to improving our justice system and meeting budget targets

Charlotte McLeod, Policy Exchange’s Crime & Justice Research Fellow, argues that a strategic review of the court estate is needed in order to improve efficiency and effectiveness. Charlotte proposes that the government should close courts that are outdated and unfit for purpose and introduce mobile or temporary courts and ‘Justice Hubs’ in order to dispense justice – as recommended in our report, Future Courts.

Latest Crime & Justice News

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RT @BenMcAleenan 🚨NEW REPORT from @Policy_Exchange 🚨 Capital Shift: How the UK can use the G7, COP26 and other summits in 2021 to drive through a programme of green finance reforms. By me and @bencaldecott, with a foreword from Anthony Browne MP. policyexchange.org.u… Here’s a summary...

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RT @BenMcAleenan 🚨NEW REPORT from @Policy_Exchange 🚨 Capital Shift: How the UK can use the G7, COP26 and other summits in 2021 to drive through a programme of green finance reforms. By me and @bencaldecott, with a foreword from Anthony Browne MP. policyexchange.org.uk/publica… Here’s a summary...

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