The liaison and diversion service provides specialist mental health assessment for people with vulnerabilities, including mental health concerns, who are in the criminal justice system. This means the person might be in court or a police station, or with a youth offending team (YOT).

The team of specialist nurses, social workers, occupational therapists and doctors:

  • Care for adults and children who need support during what can be a very stressful experience
  • Work to get the best health and justice outcomes for them; no one is judged for being in the criminal justice system.

  • Our court team works in Westminster Court and Highbury Youth Court
  • Our police liaison teams work at Acton and Hammersmith police stations. Find a police station
  • Our youth justice team works with youth offending teams in Ealing, Hammersmith and Fulham, and Hounslow and and also attend Highbury Youth Court. Find out more about youth offending teams.

What we do

For example, a liaison psychiatric nurse and liaison psychiatrist work at Westminster Court, as part of a wider team of nurses and social workers.

They will:

  • Check if a person is well enough to take part in a court hearing/legal process
  • Give magistrates, solicitors and the police, better information about individuals, to help them make decisions
  • Make sure very unwell people are brought to hospital 
  • Help other vulnerable people reach the most appropriate services for them in the community.

The liaison diversion service also works to: 

  • Divert individuals, where appropriate, out of the criminal justice system into health or other supportive services 
  • Work with other agencies to improve access to healthcare and support services for vulnerable people, and so reduce health inequalities
  • Reduce re-offending.

  • Police officers, detention staff and custody health care nurses make referrals at police stations. 
  • Individuals can self-refer or access our service by request at any custody suite or court. They can also request any professional, including the police, court staff, and detention officers to make a referral on their behalf.  
  • Court staff, defence representatives or custody staff make referrals at court. All defendants are screened each morning during the week.

If you have been seen by the youth justice liaison and diversion team at court, the police station or somewhere else, we want your views on the service we provided.

Tell us what we did well and what we could do better.

Please complete our online survey.