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Working For Better Justice on the Roads

Working For Better Justice on the Roads

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Better justice and enforcement is a key theme in our and is an issue which many of our members feel strongly about.

 

 

We're campaigning for

1. A full analysis of the way that the police and coroners investigate these cases

2. Review of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) charging standards

3. A full examination of the offences available to the CPS.

4. A review of the sentencing guidelines to ensure they adequately reflect the actual or potential consequences of the offence.

More...

We have joined forces with Cycling Weekly and many other organisations to call on the Lord Chancellor and his colleagues at the Department for Transport and the Home Office to start a comprehensive review of how the justice system operates when people are hurt or killed on the road.

Others supporting our campaign include the CTC, London Cycling Campaign, Sustrans, British Cycling’s personal injury solicitors Leigh Day and Co, RoadPeace, Brake and the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety.

British Cycling members have got behind our calls, writing to their MPs urging them to support it. 

We are calling for the Government to undertake a full, joined-up review of the way in which incidents where cyclists are killed or injured are investigated and prosecuted and then make the changes needed to give all road users confidence that that the justice system is playing the role it should do to protect them. The full text of our appeal to the Lord Chancellor Kenneth Clarke is here.

 

When the justice system gets it wrong

Many cases do not get to the courts and those that do frequently deliver results which lead to the conclusion that the justice system has got it wrong:

  • The 18 year old man who hit and killed former British Cycling volunteer coordinator Rob Jefferies was given an 18 month ban, a re-test and 200 hours community service.
  • The courts handed down a 24 week suspended sentence to a man speeding in a lorry in Derbyshire who hit and killed club cyclist Karl Austin.
  • A coroner found that “nobody is to blame” after a 34-year-old woman was killed during her cycle home at Bow roundabout, London in November last year. The tipper truck driver failed to indicate and was talking on his hands free mobile phone at the time.

It is clear to us that the current justice system often delivers results which send the wrong message about the right of people to ride safely on the roads. Most of our members are car drivers so we do not believe this is a car versus cyclist issue.

We believe the review we are calling for is an essential element in building a better culture of mutual respect on the roads where incidents which result in death and injury are treated in a way which is fair to everyone concerned and creates the right incentives for people to behave responsibly.


Back our call for a review of the justice system

We are calling on the government to undertake a comprehensive review of the justice system when someone is hurt on the road.

There is an Early Day Motion (EDM) in parliament which MPs can sign to support our call for the justice review.

MPs from all major political parties have already signed the motion but we need to keep up pressure on the government to take action.

Please email or write to your MP asking them to support the Early Day Motion for justice review.

You can download the letter template to send to your MP here and check who your MP is and their address here.

The Campaign so far:

May 2012: Launched campaign with Cycling Weekly

June 2012: Letter sent to Lord Chancellor calling for the review

July 2012: Julian Huppert MP tabled an Early Day Motion calling for the review.  We asked members & Cycling Weekly readers to write to their MPs to sign it.  16 MPs across all major political parties sign it in 2 days before the House of Commons recessed for summer.  

September 2012: On returning to the House of Commons, members & Cycling Weekly readers wrote to their MPs urging them to support a review and 78 MPs signed it, causing it to be the 12th most supported motion in parliament.

October 2012: A debate was held in parliament on Victims and the Criminal Justice System.  Many MPs attended speaking up for a justice review, and Helen Grant MP, a Justice Minister agreed to meet a British Cycling delegation to discuss the matter.

November 2012: MPs continue to support the justice review with 92 MPs signed up to the motion.