PCS is campaigning to defend the delivery of our justice from the threat of privatisation.
As part of the government’s plan to privatise large part of the criminal justice system, the Ministry of Justice are consulting companies such as G4S on delivering the enforcement and collection of criminal fines and fixed penalties.
Plans to privatise are going ahead despite court staff meeting all targets set for them in the last year and improving collection rates by 14.5%. Much of what is collected are fines that private sector companies have failed to deliver.
There is growing concern about the tactics used by poorly regulated private bailiffs. The BBC reported that the Citizens Advice Bureau is receiving a growing number of complaints about bailiffs using intimidation and even breaking the law to get people to hand over money.
PCS warns that privatisation of the collection of criminal fines and fixed penalties will have the following impact:
• Companies will add charges meaning people will find it harder to pay fines
• Companies may sell on personal information that they have access to
• Growing intimidation of vulnerable people on their doorstep by heavy handed, unscrupulous bailiffs
• Companies ‘cherry picking’ the fines that are easier to collect such as fixed penalties for motoring fines
PCS is concerned that if debt collection companies are not delivering on the contracts they already have, then why if the government looking to give them more?
Please email your MP urging them to oppose the privatisation.
Crime and courts bill - report stage briefing
Public sector prisons, not private sector profit
The UK has already got a greater proportion of privately run prisons in the world and debt collection companies are increasingly being used to collect fixed penalties for a profit. PCS’s message is clear – we cannot allow the privatisation of our prison system to continue unchecked. We are petitioning for an urgent or an independent review to consider the overall impact of prison privatisation. Please sign the petition today.