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The justice sector employs nearly 28,000 people in Wales, just over 2% of the total workforce. 41% of the sector workforce is female. Only 2% of the workforce in Wales is from a minority ethnic background, which is 7% lower than their share in the whole UK economy.

The age profile of the workforce in Wales shows that the sector employs a lower proportion of workers at either end of the age spectrum (under 25 years and over 55 years) than the whole economy. However, across the UK justice sector, younger and older workers have greater representation in Wales than in any other country, together comprising 25% of the overall workforce.

The associate professional and technical major group dominates the occupational profile of the sector across Wales (49%), compared with 53% across the UK justice sector. The overwhelming majority of the justice sector workforce in Wales are employees (100%) and on a permanent contract (95%), and the majority work in full-time jobs (85%).


Policing and Law Enforcement make up approximately 13,500 of the total Justice sector workforce.

In Wales, the community justice workforce comprises:

  • 1,450 people working in offending behaviour
  • approximately 66 people working in community safety
  • 423 people
  • an unknown number working with victims, survivors and witnesses, in substance misuse and delivering youth justice services

In Wales, HM Courts Service (HMCS) employs approximately 1,120. The Tribunal Service employs 140 people.

The HM Prison Service employs 1,230 staff in Wales. The majority of prisons in Wales are operated by HM Prison Service, although the Office of Contracted Prisons (within the Home Office) contracts with the private sector for the design, build, management and finance of private prisons.

Wales has 4,422 people employed in the 3 Welsh Fire and Rescue Service Authority areas. There were 1,956 applications received in Wales in 2006/07, of which women accounted for 19% of all successful applications whilst people from ethnic minority backgrounds accounted for 1.8%. The workforce comprises:

  • 1,671 full-time Firefighters, of which 3% are female
  • 1,978 retained Firefighters, of which 4% are female
  • 128 control room staff, of which 82% are female
  • 645 non-uniformed support staff, of which 58% are female

Wales has 4 police forces that employ 259 full-time equivalent forensic science staff. A further 173 full-time equivalent staff are employed by the commercial provider, forensic science Service.

In Wales, the Crown Prosecution Service employs over 470 full-time equivalent staff over four Areas Offices, including: Dyfed Powys; North Wales; Gwent; and South Wales.

Source: Skills for Justice LMI March 2010 and Skills for Justice Sector Skills Assessment – Wales 2010