HC Deb 08 February 1995 vol 254 cc239-40W
Mrs. Llin Golding

To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department if he will list all fast-tracking initiatives being made to reduce delays faced by child witnesses; and if these initiatives are to be evaluated for broader application.

Mr. John M. Taylor

Fast-tracking schemes are currently in place at the following Crown court centres: Leeds, Lincoln, Newcastle, covering cases from Durham; Peterborough; Plymouth, pilot scheme; Preston and Winchester, pilot scheme. Area criminal justice liaison committees are still considering whether similar schemes can be set up in other Crown court centres. However, a number of informal schemes are also in existence, in response to the duty on the courts to ensure that waiting times in cases involving child witnesses are kept to a minimum.

The Criminal Justice Consultative Council is due to review the introduction of fast tracking schemes in the Crown court at its next meeting in April, when a decision will be taken as to further action.

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