Police, health, criminal justice and voluntary agencies have come together for the unveiling of a ground-breaking new service to support vulnerable people across Greater Manchester.
Jointly commissioned by Greater Manchester’s Mayor and Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd and Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership, the service will work with vulnerable people in custody, courts and in the community to address issues such as mental ill health and substance abuse, providing the support they need to improve their health and wellbeing and reduce the risk of offending.
Mitie Care & Custody, in partnership with Cheshire and Greater Manchester Community Rehabilitation Company and 5 Boroughs Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, were chosen in October 2016 to deliver the integrated Police Custody Healthcare Service and a Liaison and Diversion Service, which will enhance support already offered to people who come into custody.
Greater Manchester Mayor and Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd said: “This service will provide a lifeline to thousands of vulnerable people, bringing police and health services together to address underlying issues of offending. It’s a common sense approach, but one that will only be effective if everybody with a stake in the criminal justice system contributes to its success.”
Dr Richard Preece, Executive Lead for Quality, Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership, said: “Devolution in Greater Manchester is providing the means and opportunities to do things differently. Health and social care cannot be seen in isolation. We must work together to improve care in custody. By joining up our way of working, vulnerable individuals will be supported to access appropriate services and hopefully together we can reduce the chances of people reoffending.”
On behalf of all partner organisations, Seb Stewart, Managing Director at Care & Custody Health said: “By bringing together a credible, forward-thinking partnership of organisations to deliver fully integrated, innovative services to the police, courts and communities of Greater Manchester, we can support positive outcomes for vulnerable individuals coming into the criminal justice system, and contribute to a reduction in re-offending.”
The service was launched at an event at Friends Meeting House in Manchester on Monday 30 January. At the event attendees heard how the service will work on the ground and the role they can play in driving it forward. Speakers included Adam Allen, Chief Executive, Police and Crime Commissioner’s Office, Richard Preece, Executive Lead for Quality, Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership, and Seb Stewart, Managing Director at Mitie.
The new service, which goes live on 1 February, will health assess thousands of vulnerable adults and young people who come into contact with the criminal justice system, including custody detainees and defendants passing through the court system. Those with mental health issues, learning disabilities, substance misuse or other vulnerabilities will be supported to access appropriate services.
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