DAFYDD Llywelyn, Dyfed-Powys Police and Crime Commissioner has this week praised the progress made within local magistrates courts as they near normal levels of service following the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Not only did lockdown and social distance restrictions change the picture of crime and disorder in the last months, but it also changed the way in which victims were being supported. Ensuring the return of normal levels of service in Courts is seen as vital for victims, who are ultimately the end-users of our Criminal Justice System.
Commissioner Llywelyn has been instrumental in coordinating the Criminal Justice System’s response to the pandemic, working with partners at an All Wales level to develop emergency joint-working arrangements, as well as leading the local response via the Dyfed-Powys Criminal Justice Board, which he Chairs. This partnership recovery work has delivered hugely positive steps forward, with local Magistrates courts being some of the first in Wales to resume normal levels of service having put contingency plans such as extra courts in place to ensure the full backlog of cases has been heard.
Dafydd Llywelyn said:
“It’s extremely pleasing to hear that the local Magistrates Courts in Dyfed-Powys are now nearing normal levels of service following disruptions to proceedings as a consequence to lockdown and social distance measures.
“Ensuring effective victim support has been a priority of mine as a Commissioner, to ensure that they can recover from the impact of crime and during my time in office I have been committed to developing a more effective and responsive Criminal Justice System.
“The impact of court closures during lockdown has been particularly significant and together with my office, I have been working closely with local Criminal Justice agencies to ensure that normal business can be resumed as quickly and safely as possible to secure the best possible service and outcomes for victims.
“Developments at Crown Court are understandably more complex but proceedings have moved swiftly, with Wales once again being at the forefront of developing emergency Nightingale court provision.
“I’m grateful to everyone who has worked to ensure that we have reached this point in such a quick timescale. The news is testament to the strong partnership working of local Criminal Justice agencies.”