A unique and rewarding experience
Being a Lay Observer can be challenging, rewarding, and fascinating. As well as the opportunity to participate in a unique part of the justice system, you will have the opportunity to meet and work with people from diverse backgrounds and many walks of life.
Develop key personal skills
As a Lay Observer, you will have an opportunity to develop a wide range of personal skills such as decision-making, inter-personal skills and team-working, which can benefit your career and your employer. All whilst making a positive contribution to ensuring that detained people are treated fairly and with respect.
You will be using the evidence you gather from a lot of sources, triangulating the information and building up a picture.
Listening & communicating
Your liaison with both staff and detained people will develop your stakeholder management skills.
Managing your time
From completing visits to writing reports, you will learn to balance your volunteering commitments with your other responsibilities.
You will learn how to convey your findings and demonstrate where changes are needed in written reports.
Training and continuous development
Upon starting as a Lay Observer you will receive necessary training including joint visits with experienced Lay Observers, training events, both local and national, and E-learning modules. You will also have the opportunity to attend annual training events.
Gain an insight into the Criminal Justice System
As a Lay Observer, you will gain a unique perspective of the justice system. Training is provided to ensure that new Lay Observers gain the insight and understanding needed to carry out the role effectively. You will be invited to attend initial and ongoing training courses and will also receive on-the-job training from experienced members.
Employers really value volunteers
Volunteering for the Lay Observers can help boost job satisfaction and evidence that a company is more socially responsible.
Pride and productivity
When employees volunteer for the Lay Observers, they are making a difference to their local communities. Volunteering can enhance job satisfaction, engagement and lead to happier, more productive employees.
Key workplace skills
Lay Observer volunteers gain many transferable skills through the monitoring of court custody and transportation. This will include observation skills, decision making and dealing with people from different backgrounds.