05 February 2019
The government has announced proposals to reorganise Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) to create a department that works collectively and collaboratively to keep islanders safe and secure.
The proposed changes are part of the One Government modernisation programme for Jersey’s public services, which was announced last March by the States of Jersey Chief Executive, Charlie Parker.
The proposals aim to create a department with a focus on collaboration, integration, prevention and early intervention, by bringing together services which in larger jurisdictions are run separately.
A high-level model for JHA has been created with two functions: Public Protection and Law Enforcement; and Criminal Justice and Offender Management. This was shared with staff last November.
Yesterday (Monday 4 February) the department launched a formal consultation to give all staff in Justice and Home Affairs the opportunity to give their views on the proposals for how Public Protection and Law Enforcement could look and operate in the future. The consultation closes on Wednesday 6 March 2019.
It is proposed that the Customs and Immigration Service and States of Jersey Police will come together as Law and Border Enforcement, with one joint Head of Service, while the Fire and Rescue and the Ambulance Services will combine with another joint Head of Service. The two joint Heads of Service will report to the new Group Director for Public Protection and Law Enforcement, Kate Briden, with the States of Jersey Police retaining an independent reporting line to Jersey Police Authority.
The proposed structure also includes a new position – Head of Business Support – which will be an important role for providing administrative and business management support across JHA, enabling frontline services to be used most effectively.
Director General for Justice and Home Affairs, Julian Blazeby, said: “This is the start of our journey to modernise our services across public protection, law enforcement and emergency planning. Our key focus is to keep islanders safe and secure, and Jersey is small enough for us to bring together and integrate our emergency and public protection services, which just isn’t possible in larger jurisdictions.
“We’re keen for our staff to be involved in shaping their department and we’ll be seeking their feedback throughout the consultation process.”
Home Affairs Minister, Connétable Len Norman, added: “Jersey is fortunate to have excellent law enforcement and emergency services which are staffed by dedicated and professional public servants. This does not mean, however, that we can’t improve further by integrating our services and enhancing our collective working. We have already demonstrated the benefit of this approach by launching the Combined Control Room for Police, Fire and Ambulance.
"At the centre of the proposed changes to the structure of Justice and Home Affairs is the objective of enhancing the delivery of our frontline services. That is my commitment to the public. I acknowledge that this period of consultation on the new structure will create some uncertainty for a number of members of staff in the department, several of whom have given many years of service and are committed to their roles. I encourage them, and all their colleagues, to engage in the consultation and look forward to the proposals being developed and finalised over the coming weeks.”
After the consultation, a report of the feedback will be published, before this part of the structure is decided on, with any revisions arising from the feedback. JHA’s Criminal Justice and Offender Management model will be considered at a later date.