A new service to improve the experience and outcomes for female offenders within the criminal justice system across north Wales has been launched.

Checkpoint comes via a service commissioned by North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Andy Dunbobbin to tackle the underlying causes of offending behaviour, such as mental health and substance misuse,

Checkpoint builds on similar services in the region that have been developed since 2013, when parliament’s Justice Select Committee Inquiry into Women Offenders found that more needed to be done to improve the experience of women in the Criminal Justice System nationally.

Since then, support has increased to help women access assistance and support successfully, including advice on housing, accommodation and education so that they can make positive changes to their own lives and the lives of their families, and the new women’s service from Checkpoint will expand on this service provision.

It is an already established initiative that uses out of court disposals and offender management principles to provide a credible alternative to prosecution.

It does so by identifying and supporting relevant needs and the ‘critical pathways’ out of crime. This means low and medium adult offenders are diverted away from crime (or exit it earlier), while also addressing the underlying causes of their offending.

Checkpoint has seen much success since its launch with male offenders and aims to replicate that with the more specialised women’s service.