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Cranstoun recognised in best practice awards

Posted on: 21 October, 2021

Cranstoun’s innovative criminal justice services have received national recognition for best practice at the Howard League Awards.

Cranstoun – a social justice charity focused on rebuilding lives and creating ‘system change by doing’ – was shortlisted for three prestigious Howard League Awards including organisation of the year, and for their (CARS) Cranstoun Arrest Referral Service in the liaison and diversion category.

The Cranstoun (DIVERT™) programme was given ‘runner-up’ recognition in the policing & adults’ category at the virtual awards ceremony. Cranstoun’s Drug Diversion (DIVERT™) programme, delivered in partnership with West Midlands Police & Crime Commissioner and West Mercia Police & Crime Commissioner, aims to deter people from the criminal justice system at the earliest opportunity and empower and support people to make positive changes.

The scheme offers police officers an alternative to arrest with access to meaningful interventions and education aimed at reducing harm, offending, reoffending and ensures a health-based approach is taken over criminal conviction benefitting police forces, individuals and society as a whole.

89% of offenders did not reoffended in the 6 months following the DIVERT™ programme.

Arron Owen, Cranstoun Service Manager, West Midlands Criminal Justice Services said:
“We are delighted our innovative criminal justice services have been recognised at the Howard League Awards. Cranstoun’s vision is to be a world-class leader in rebuilding lives and to create ‘system change by doing’ and we believe in the use of diversionary services and the benefits of harm reduction and early intervention. The cost of substance misuse to the West Midlands is £1.4 billion annually and we believe our DIVERT™ programme has the potential to reduce these costs and most importantly, empowers change & makes a difference to people’s lives.

The West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, Simon Foster said:
“The DIVERT programme is producing great results and is helping us steer people away from the criminal justice system.
“I’m really proud that we were the first to launch this innovative programme and it is rightly getting the national recognition it deserves.
“Looking at new ways to tackle the substance misuse problems we have in the UK is crucial if we are going to reduce the cost and harm of drugs and initiatives like DIVERT are helping us do just that.”

The West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner, John Campion said:
“I am proud that DIVERT has been acknowledged and recognised for their hard work and dedication. The commitment of the team and its positive impact on the community is what allowed it to be nominated. The education and treatment pathways provided by Cranstoun offers often life changing solutions for its service users and is why I am so passionate in supporting and funding their services across West Mercia. It is excellent for them to be recognised for this award.”

About the Howard League Awards
The Howard League for Penal Reform’s annual awards are for the country’s most successful community projects encouraging desistance from crime. Find out more at:

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