- DIVERT is a Metropolitan Police Service intervention programme aimed to reduce reoffending. It is delivered in the Lewisham Police Custody Suite by the Bounce Back Project, and aims to DIVERT young adults between 18-25 years of age away from crime. DIVERT addresses a gap in the statutory provision for young adults, and is in operation in a number of the busiest police custody suites in London.
DIVERT has the ability to work with young adults whilst criminal proceedings are in progress. It works in parallel with the criminal justice system and tailors the intervention programme according to the judicial circumstances without interfering with the course of justice. DIVERT is not a soft option. It is an intelligent approach to reduce reoffending using proven desistance factors to prevent further criminal behaviour.
DIVERT custody intervention coaches explain the numerous paths that the young adults can be referred to and follow this with a long term development plan to guide them in fulfilling their own goals, relating to education, training and employment.
The DIVERT custody intervention coaches are NOT police officers and all conversations are completely confidential. They will never discuss the circumstances of the young adult’s arrest and any matters relating to the current investigation. The custody intervention coaches are fully trained, MPS security vetted and independent.
DIVERT is non-judgemental and the custody intervention coaches are always ready to listen.
They give their time with genuine interest to each young adult they meet in police custody, in an effort to start a meaningful engagement and effective intervention.
DIVERT is totally voluntary for our young adults and independent of the current police investigation and any subsequent criminal charges.
DIVERT is the only intervention programme of this type taking place in police custody suites in England and Wales. Reoffending rates reduced by 19% Source: Metropolitan Police Service
DIVERT utilises the time spent in police custody as a ‘teachable moment’. A significant cognitive experience to prompt subsequent behaviour change. Young adults in police custody are often at their lowest point. DIVERT offers hope and an opportunity to make positive change.
DIVERT will always remain as an open offer and an opportunity to make positive change. A number of young adults have reconnected with DIVERT after release from prison, stating that the conversation in police custody had been impactful and stayed with them whilst serving their prison sentence.
DIVERT has a restorative approach and is respectful to the victims of crime and their needs.