GPS Tagging Pilot – North and East London

Reference code: 
PCD 112
Date signed: 
21 December 2016
Authorisation name: 
Sophie Linden, Deputy Mayor, Policing and Crime

Executive summary

DMPC Decision 2015-57 approved the use of GPS Tagging as part of the wider Gripping the Offender Pilot to test the impact on sentencing outcomes and offender behaviour as part of an enhanced whole system response to those offenders causing the most harm to communities and the greatest demand on the broader criminal justice system. 

An open and competitive process was undertaken to select a provider to support the delivery of a GPS pilot to run for one year and to tag between 75 and 100 prolific offenders.  

This DMPC Decision requests approval to award this contract for the provision of GPS tags, (and any hardware and software needed to run them), a fitting service (resource to put on and remove the tags along with brief guidance that needs to be given to the offender) and a monitoring service.

Recommendation

That the DMPC:

  • Approve the award of a conditional contract up to the value of £150,000 to Buddi Ltd to deliver the GPS tagging service to be funded in 2016/17 financial year; and 
  • Delegate responsibility for the finalisation of the contractual arrangements described below, including relevant terms and the signing of the contract, to the Chief Executive. 

Non-confidential facts and advice to the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime (DMPC)

1.    Introduction and background 

1.1    In January 2016, the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) announced their intention to run a small number of pilots with Police and Crime Commissioners and police forces to test the impact of GPS tagging on offender behaviour and decision making.

1.2    The Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) put forward a proposal to test use of mandatory tagging as part of the Gripping the Offender (GTO) pilot – see DMPC Decision 2015-57. This was accepted by the MoJ and it was announced in March 2016 that North and East London Local Justice Areas (covering the eight pilot boroughs for GTO ) will be one of the first pilots in the country to test use of mandatory GPS tagging). 

1.3    On 12 March 2016, the then Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Justice wrote to the then Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime (annex 2) to confirm that the necessary commencement orders will be made to enable MOPAC to pilot GPS tags as part of a community order, a suspended sentence order or a court imposed bail condition.

1.4    Part 4 of Schedule 16 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013 broadened the provisions of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 to add “electronic monitoring requirement” to the list of primary requirements that may be imposed as part of a community order or a suspended sentence order. For the purposes of this pilot, the MoJ has agreed to make the commencement orders to bring the provisions into force. The Ministry of Justice is working with MOPAC to issue a Code of Practice concerning the processing of data gathered in the course of electronic monitoring of offenders. Once enacted, Courts will be notified by the Ministry of Justice of the availability of Electronic Monitoring requirements.

1.5    The GPS tagging pilot will commence on 31 January 2017. Therefore, the commencement of the provisions needs to be no later than 9 January. If a delay occurs, the scheduled contract start date of 31 January 2017 is liable to change, as 21calendar days are required for the laying of the Statutory Instruments in Parliament.

Mandatory GPS Tagging Pilot

1.6    The GPS tagging service will form a key part of the GTO pilot (please refer to DMPCD 2015 – 57), which is testing a whole system approach to address prolific offending by all partners working together to target services at those offenders causing the most harm to communities through repeat offending. 

1.7    The GPS tagging service will be integrated and aligned with the other commissioned services being delivered through GTO including two dedicated pre-sentence report writers at court, a heightened policing response through the provision of additional analytical capacity and an enhanced offender management service providing bespoke interventions targeted at the needs of the prolific offender cohort. 

1.8    The GPS tagging pilot will build on the infrastructure already in place as part of the GTO programme, including a dedicated implementation team with responsibility for overseeing delivery of the commissioned services.

1.9    MOPAC’s Evidence and Insight team will evaluate the impact of mandatory GPS tagging as part of the wider pilot evaluation. The evaluation of this pilot will be aligned with the MoJ’s evaluation of the other GPS tagging pilots.

1.10    MOPAC has allocated up to £150,000  to GPS tagging for all three elements of the GPS tagging service being commissioned:

  1. The provision of GPS tags – Buddi Ltd will supply GPS tags and associated equipment;
  2. Fitting of tags – Buddi Ltd will be required to provide a service to fit, install and remove the GPS tag and associated equipment;
  3. Monitoring of the Electronic Monitoring Requirements – Buddi Ltd will provide a monitoring service that operates 24 hours a day for 7 days a week.

1.11    The GPS tagging service is scheduled to launch on 31 January 2017, with mobilisation of the service taking place from December 2016, including training to the Judiciary, finalisation of contractual arrangements, processes and toolkit, and training and stakeholder engagement. 

2.    Issues for Consideration

2.1    DMPC 2015-57 approved GPS Tagging as part of the Gripping the Offender Pilot. 

2.2    MOPAC undertook a competitive procurement process in line with the Contract Regulations to award the contract to provide and fit the tags, and monitor them.  The process commenced on the 7th September 2016 and closed on the 5th October 2016.  

2.3     MOPAC received two bids which were assessed by a multi-agency panel including MOPAC, CAST (Centre for Applied Science and Technology) and London Community Rehabilitation Company (CRC). The bids were assessed against the evaluation criteria set out in the procurement specification. Both bids met the essential criteria and were then scored against a set of quality criteria as outlined in the specification. The overall criteria and weightings are set out in the table below.

Ref. Criteria Weighting
1 Effective Implementation 10%
2 Delivery Model 35%
3 Data requirements 25%
4 Experience and Expertise 15%
5 Value for Money 15%
Total 100%

2.4    The recommendation of the panel was that MOPAC appoint Buddi Ltd to undertake the GPS tagging service as outlined in the specification. 

3.    Financial Comments

3.1.    The maximum value of the conditional contract for the GPS tagging service will be £150,000. MOPAC has committed to funding the GPS tagging service through the Home Office Police Innovation Fund allocation (DMPCD 2015 – 57 refer). The deliverables and outcomes will be set out in the contract and delivery against these will be monitored through the contract management process.    

3.2.    The Home Office Police Innovation Fund is provided through an annual grant to MOPAC. This decision complies with the general conditions and scope of the grant from the Home Office and in particular will: 

  • Provides a heightened policing response within the designated pilot area will ensure that GTO nominals are more consistently flagged and targeted throughout the Criminal Justice System.

4.    Legal Comments 

4.1.    The Crime and Courts Act 2013 (Part 4 of Schedule 16 – Electronic Monitoring of Offenders) broadened the provisions in the Criminal Justice Act 2003 to add “electronic monitoring requirement” to the list of primary requirements that may be imposed as part of a community order or suspended sentence order. These provisions will shortly be brought into force.

4.2.    MOPAC’s general powers are set out in the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 (the 2011 Act). Section 3(6) of the 2011 Act provides that MOPAC must “secure the maintenance of the metropolitan police service and secure that the metropolitan police service is efficient and effective.”  This is a broad power and the commissioning of services which are part of a number of proposals aimed at reducing prolific offenders would enable the efficiency and effectiveness of the police service.  In addition, under Schedule 3, paragraph 7 MOPAC has wide incidental powers to “do anything which is calculated to facilitate, or is conducive or incidental to, the exercise of the functions of the Office.” Paragraph 7(2) (a) provides that this includes entering into contracts and other agreements.

4.3.    Under MOPAC’s Scheme of Delegation, the award of individual contracts up to £499,999 has been delegated to the Chief Executive in line with Section 5 (section 5.12). This delegation includes the responsibility for signing the contractual agreement.

4.4.    There are further relevant powers set out in the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 at sections 17(1) (a) to (c) which place MOPAC under a duty to exercise its functions with due regard to the likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all it can to prevent, crime and disorder (including anti-social and other behaviour adversely affecting the local environment) and reoffending in its area; and the misuse of drugs, alcohol and other substances in its area. The proposed arrangements are consistent with MOPAC’s duties in the Crime and Disorder Act 1998.

4.5    As the proposed pilot may raise issues under the Data Protection Act 1998 and/or the Human Rights Act 1998, a Privacy Impact Assessment has been carried out to assess and address any risks, and the Code of Practice (as outlined in paragraph 1.4) outlines how data can be used. 

4.6    Officers must ensure it complies with its Financial Regulations and Contract Regulations and must ensure the right contractual documentation is put in place before the commencement of the services. 

5.    Equality Comments 

5.1    Section 149(1) of the Equality Act 2010 provides that, in the exercise of their functions, public authorities must have due regard to the need to:

  • Eliminate discrimination, harassment, victimisation and any other conduct that is prohibited by or under the Equality Act 2010;
  • Advance equality of opportunity between persons who share a relevant protected characteristic and persons who do not share it; and
  • Foster good relations between persons who share a relevant protected characteristic and persons who do not share it.

The protected characteristics are: age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation.

5.2    The obligation in section 149(1) is placed upon the Mayor, as decision maker. Due regard must be had at the time a particular decision is being considered.  The duty is non-delegable and must be exercised with an open mind.  

5.3    There are some offenders that are over-represented within the GTO cohort. Young adult offenders (aged 18-25) will be a priority focus due to the significant volume of the GTO cohort that fall within this transitional age group, as well as their high reoffending rates and the opportunity the pilot present to test a new approach to address the additional needs this cohort of offenders often exhibit.

5.4    Female offenders will be a priority focus due to the cohort size being smaller, their bespoke needs and the positive impact that interventions can have on this target group. A female offender service has been launched for females in the south and west of London and GTO will allow for a further approach to reduce female offending to be tested in north and east London. 

5.5    An Equality Impact Assessment has been conducted and any potential impact will be kept under review throughout the pilot. 

6.    Background/supporting papers

Annex 1: Mandatory GPS tagging London Pilot – Request for Tender 
Annex 2: Letter from Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Justice


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