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Criminal Justice

The Corston Independent Funders’ Coalition

Barrow Cadbury Trust is very pleased to be part of the funders collaboration – The Corston Independent Funders’ Coalition (CIFC) – which has recently submitted its response to a consultation on Imposition of community and custodial sentences guidelines.

The CIFC believes that all women should have access to justice in the criminal justice system – women already involved in the system as well as those at risk – and that women’s specific needs must be met:

  • at each point of contact with the criminal justice system, as opposed to being shoe-horned into a system that does not account for their specific gendered needs
  • through trauma responsive ways of working which address the underlying vulnerabilities and disadvantages that the vast majority of women in the criminal justice system experience, as
    well as nurturing their strengths.

In line with Baroness Corston’s vision set out in the Corston Report, the CIFC seeks to enable systemic change in how women experience the justice system including through supporting women-centred, holistic, and trauma-responsive approaches to divert them away from crime. Much of the way the member organisations fund, and work more widely, therefore is shaped by systems thinking. The group understands that the issues it is seeking to address are complex, that causes and consequences are interconnected, and that the power to create change is spread across the system. This work therefore requires partnering, collaboration and co-production with all actors, particularly those with lived experience of the criminal justice system, to find solutions that will alter the underlying structures and supporting mechanisms which make the system operate in a particular way. And it is this commitment and approach that it brings to the table.

The CIFC is a diverse group of funders with different charitable objectives, interests, and institutional frameworks. Opportunities for members to engage are structured around the three ways in which the Coalition seeks to make a difference – networking and sharing information and learning about policy, practice and grant-making, collaborative funding, and influencing policy and practice.