The East London Criminal Justice and Diversion team identified a need to improve working relationships with custody staff and to increase the numbers of appropriate referrals (particularly youth referrals).
The team set out to increase the number of youth referrals by 25%. They boosted the frequency of screening referrals, improved IT access, to facilitate information sharing across agencies, and expanded staffing and service provision to meet the highest demand, at the busiest stations. They provided mental health training to the police and other agencies.
The team used a driver diagram and PDSA cycles. They also completed an audit to identify police training needs.
In East London, the team increased the number of assessments from an average of nine (before the change) to thirteen per week. The number of assessments increased from fifteen to twenty per week. In Bethnal Green, the team increased the number of assessments from an average of three (before the change) to six per week. At peak times, the number of assessments increased from four to ten per week. The average number of youth assessments increased from none, to one or two a week.