Rochdale MP, Tony Lloyd, has called on the government to ‘get a grip’ on IT system failures which is having a detrimental impact on the way the courts operate and manage their caseload.
Tony said, “We say ‘justice delayed is justice denied’ but for the victims of crimes, the delays in seeing their cases get to court is a scandal.
“I note that Greater Manchester’s Chief Constable has recently and publicly asked police to bring forward prosecutions because of the slowness in the Crown Prosecution Service but in truth, the problem goes much deeper.
“The whole court process has been underfunded for years but the failure of the case management systems has already seen tens of millions of pounds wasted and ultimately, it’s at the detriment to the delivery of justice.”
The digital case management system, Common Platform, was rolled out across the HM Courts & Tribunals Service without adequate assurances it was robust enough to be deployed. The IT system was put on hold for two weeks in September after it failed to send 3,011 notifications to partner agencies between June 2021 and August 2022 as the system could not cope with the volume of notifications. This included 35 cases where people were not electronically tagged, while HMCTS recorded 231 critical incidents in eight months affecting users nationally.
Tony joins over 25 cross-party MPs in signing a Parliamentary motion which calls on the Government and HMCTS to suspend the use of Common Platform until concerns raised by the National Audit Office and PCS Union are fully resolved. PCS members took industrial action over this issue in October last year as IT system failures were ‘affecting their members’ health and their ability to do their jobs,’ highlighting that the system failures were ‘detrimental to the delivery of justice.’
Notes to editors:-
• The full text of the Early Day Motion and a list of signatories can be found here.