CPS Response to HMCPSI Inspection of CPS response to COVID-19: 16 March to 8 May 2020

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HMCPSI has today [30 June 2020] published a report into the effectiveness of the CPS response to the Coronavirus pandemic during the period prior to and during the national lockdown. We welcome this scrutiny of our response to an unprecedented situation.

We are pleased that the inspectors found a great deal to commend, particularly recognising the strategic foresight in investing and developing our digital capacity and capability, which enabled us to move the majority of our workforce from offices to home overnight. The plans that were in place enabled us to quickly react to minimise the impact on CPS business and our contribution to criminal justice. Senior managers were fully engaged internally and with partners to ensure that staff knew what was happening and that partnership challenges were addressed.

Inspectors report that provision of support to staff has been impressive, and that communications were timely, clear, consistent, and unambiguous. We are particularly pleased that inspectors found staff at all levels felt that their safety was the priority, and that the support given demonstrated that the CPS is an organisation with a caring and considerate culture.

The CPS response to the pandemic was made possible by the professionalism and commitment to delivering justice of all our people, who responded rapidly to the new and significant challenges presented by this global emergency. We are grateful for each of their contributions and will continue to prioritise their safety and wellbeing as we enter the next phase of recovery.

We welcome the indication that HMCPSI intend to conduct a further and more extensive inspection in 2021, which will look more closely at stakeholder relationships as well as the recovery phase.

There were no recommendations or aspects for improvement in this report.