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Tags are what WordPress calls is keywords. I attach a small number of tags to every post to help people navigate between content with the same keywords. Tags may be people (David Gauke say), organisations (The Howard League, Revolving Doors Agency), themes (women offenders, homelessness) or specific items (heroin, cocaine, ROTL). If you’re looking to research a particular issue, they can be invaluable.

On Probation

Developing a probation mutual: from theory to practice

Saleha Wadee, CEO of Laurus Development, with her second post on setting up the first mutual to spin out of the probation service. “One of our values is “acting with a sense of urgency” and this has been the main contributor to our development in the world of probation. Freed from institutional constraints we have reacted swiftly scaling up our ambition to become a national provider capable of attracting and securing business with both the retained public service and the new providers of adult offender services.”

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Commissioning

When Police Commissioners rule the world…

I’ve never really understood why right-wing think tanks have been such strong advocates of Police and Crime Commissioners expanding their powers at such an early stage in their existence. Reform published a report before PCCs were even elected which advocated that they should be in control not only of local police and criminal justice agencies but the fire and rescue and ambulance services too. Yesterday, Policy Exchange published Power Down: A plan for a cheaper, more effective justice system which again placed PCCs at the centre of change.

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Commissioning

What is the state of the reducing reoffending market?

The IfG makes two very critical findings of the current commissioning of reducing reoffending services. Firstly, local commissioning is ineffective in most areas. Seondly, neither NOMS nor Probation Trusts has a systematic way of knowing whether commissioned services are effective.

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Payment by Results

The 9th Commandment of Payment by Results: Thou shalt join up commissioning

If successful recovery from addiction can only be achieved by a coordinated approach across the health, drug treatment, criminal justice, housing, social care and ETE (employment, training and education) sectors, which government departments should pay for which outcomes? Ideally the Ministry of Justice, Department of Health, DWP and Supporting People should all contribute to a pooled budget. But of course that’s not the way that departmental budgets work – indeed, there’s evidence that, despite the Community Budgets initiative – departmentalitis has actually got worse over recent years in the face of largescale and repeated cuts in expenditure.

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Finally Friday

Advise, Assist and Unfriend

Probation officers use social media for many different reasons. Promoting the work of the service. Building alliances with local commissioners and other stakeholders. Discussing best

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