Here you can find over 250 posts tracking every major development in our prisons since 2011. You can read prison safety statistics, find out about prison reform plans and (often lack of progress), positive developments and abject failures. If you’re looking for something in particular, try the search box below:
The welcome fall in the number of children in custody means that those who remain represent a more concentrated mix of very challenging young people, held in a smaller number of establishments that are increasingly unsuitable to meet their needs, and cared for by a staff group beset by shortages and a lack of training for their complex and demanding role.
This finding gives hope to the value of Mr Gove’s review; if the quality and availability of prison education can be improved, it appears that there are large numbers of prisoners committed to making a positive change to their lives with education a keystone to that progress.
The new Justice Secretary Michael Gove has made much of the need to have an ethical criminal justice system. One step hemight take would be to make the Prisons and Probation Ombudsman’s recommendations legally enforceable.
Although it is reassuring to hear that immigration removal centres are basically safe centres where many detainees are well cared for, it is distressing to hear that there is no reliable access to legal advice.
The Chief Inspector again attributed some of the difficulties to cuts in staff numbers. Given the reduction in the number of children in custody, it should be an achievable goal for new Justice Secretary Michael Gove to turn the situation around.
Sodexo and NACRO are the new partnership running the South Yorkshire Community Rehabilitation Company and it will be interesting to see whether they can have a positive impact on reducing the reoffending of released prisoners – their results will also be subject to a payment by results contracting approach, this time using both a binary and frequency (but not severity of offence) payment model.
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