Monitoring welfare and access to justice
Lay Observers are independent members of the public who are appointed by the Secretary of State to monitor those held in court custody. We report on whether the individuals held are being treated with decency and respect and whether their welfare is being looked after.
Volunteer to make a difference
Interested in volunteering?
Our volunteers do an incredible job and you could too.
Find out more about volunteering as a Lay Observer
Gain valuable skills and experience
Whether you’re studying, in employment, retired or thinking about returning to work, develop transferable skills in a unique environment.
How volunteering benefits you
Check to see if we are currently recruiting.
See our current vacancies
Who we are and what we do?
- We are ordinary members of the public
- We are independent public appointees
- We make an average of 2 to 3 visits a month to different courts
- We observe the treatment of detained people in court custody and during transportation between prison and court
- We have unrestricted access to the facilities we monitor
- We have confidential conversations with people who are detained