Criminal Justice

Building on previous Greater Manchester devolution deals, the government has agreed to give further freedom and flexibility to Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) and the Mayor/Police and Crime Commissioner around criminal justice and offender management.

A joined-up justice system is vital if we are to be able drive forward improvements for the benefit of local people. We are committed to being forerunners in this area, pushing boundaries and testing innovative new approaches to working with offenders.

Justice devolution will strengthen the work Greater Manchester is already doing to deliver effective local justice and reduce offending. It will allow GMCA to drive forward important improvements by more closely integrating health, education and accommodation, with police, Crown Prosecution Service, the courts, prisons, and probation services.

The deal will see Greater Manchester, the Ministry of Justice, the HM Prison and Probation service, the Youth Justice Board and other partner agencies work together to agree what will be implemented by April 2017 and beyond.

Justice devolution plans include:


A greater involvement in future plans for local courts, helping HM Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) find ways for making local justice more efficient and effective, for example through more innovative use of venues and the use of problem-solving courts.

Youth justice

Transformation of the youth justice system, with a particular focus on 'looked after children' and in alignment with Charlie Taylor's review of the youth justice system.

Better services for youth offenders, a more devolved youth justice system, and the creation of new models of secure schools for under-18s in the region.

Local integration of youth support and redesigned non-custodial youth justice funding arrangements.


More autonomy for prison governors, particularly around education provision within prisons.

Linking adult education and skills training provision in the community with education provision in prisons.

Exploring the potential for new opportunities to aid in the resettlement and rehabilitation of offenders.

Options to devolve custody budgets for female offenders, young offenders, and those sentenced to less than two years in prison.


A greater role in the commissioning of offender management services, alongside the National Offender Management Service (NOMS), to allow more local flexibility, innovation and better coordination with other local services including healthcare and accommodation.

Greater influence over probation and the Manchester division of the Community Rehabilitation Company (CRC).

Exploring the use of GPS and sobriety tagging to improve supervision of offenders and aid rehabilitation.


A stronger focus on rehabilitation, including more focus on prevention and harm reduction.

Co-ordination of health services to reduce reoffending, for example by making better use of mental health and substance misuse services.

Making more productive use of offender time and skills, getting offenders closer to the workplace.

Building on Greater Manchester criminal justice successes, such as reducing reoffending in women and the use of intensive community orders for 18-25 year-old men.


Greater flexibility over funding for victims of crime, including allowing Police and Crime Commissioner grant funding to be rolled forward to future years to help support transformation of services.

Improving the system for victims of crime through early intervention and prevention initiatives.

Justice and Rehabilitation Executive Board

Chaired by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Beverley Hughes, the Justice and Rehabilitation Executive Board has the support of central government and exists to provide leadership of the local justice system and oversee performance.

Transition and memorandums of understanding

We will work together with all partner agencies involved to identify what needs to change and co-design a criminal justice system that is effective in reducing offending and harm to local people.

To help ensure a smooth planning and transition process, we will sign up to memorandums of understanding, important documents that set out how partner agencies will work together to achieve this transformation.

Your views and questions

Your views are important in helping us to shape our understanding of what challenges we currently face and what opportunities exist to change and develop services across Greater Manchester. Please take the opportunity to complete this survey.