Our work across the Criminal Justice Sector aims to increase the awareness of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller people’s needs at all stages of the justice system. We aim to highlight the need for improved alternative to custody models, the higher usage of diversion schemes, and for those in custody, improved support in prisons.

We conduct research and advocacy in regard to Gypsy, Roma and Traveller people in the criminal justice system. To raise awareness of the unequal outcomes and disproportionate representation across the CJS we take several approaches internally, and work with stakeholders and government departments to achieve the following outcomes:

  • Produce a strong evidence base outlining main issues for GRT in the criminal justice system
  • Highlight the need for Roma to be recorded in HMPPS and MoJ ethnicity data
  • Demand reform to overcome inequality in the justice system.
  • Campaign to reduce the disproportionate representation of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller Men, Women and Youth in the justice system.
  • Support Government departments to work toward suitable interventions and toolkits to aid long-term rehabilitation for GRT in the criminal justice system
  • Promote the increased inclusion and visibility G&T people’s experiences in research and reports by the third sector and government
  • Advocate for improved processes in data collection to enable consistent and routine ethnic monitoring across the entire CJS.
  • Create a strong network of other CJS organisations and professionals to work with us on our campaigns and highlight the need to include Gypsy, Roma and Traveller people’s experiences of inequality in the justice system.

Our Areas of Work

Our recent areas of focus to date have been exploring why Gypsy, Roma and Traveller children experience the school to prison pipeline and how it can be interrupted

The ‘school to prison pipeline’ is a term used to describe the path from school exclusion to entry into prison. Increasingly, schools are moving towards no tolerance policies which result in permanent exclusions, particularly for children from Gypsy, Roma and Traveller and other ethnic minority backgrounds. These children are overrepresented in Young Offender Institutions.

We have also produced a range of briefings looking into Gypsy, Roma and Traveller experiences of custody, covering Mental Health, Education in Prison, the Use of Force and a number of reports that focus on youth justice and GRT youth’s experiences of the justice system. This has included our report Overlooked and Overrepresented (2016) and a number of briefings that focus on the needs of GRT youth.

Upcoming Projects

We have several upcoming projects in this area, including a 2023 study into the availability and accessibility of purposeful activities for GRT people in prison.  We are very much looking forward to our Parliamentary Launch for this: Available but not Accessible.

equality of opportunity, reduce exclusions and highlight discriminatory practices, together with the knowledge we have on the youth justice system. This report will highlight the key issues, and importantly take a solution-based approach to asking for change in the education system, to address the disproportionality we see in the Youth Justice system

Throughout this project, we will be providing webinars to help educate and advocate on how the barriers facing Gypsy, Roma and Traveller people in the justice system can be removed, and what steps can be taken to improve the outcomes of those in contact with the justice system