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short-term prisoner

Commenting on the HM Inspectorate of Probation report on Post-release supervision for short-term prisoners: the work undertaken by Community Rehabilitation Companies (CRCs), Mark Day, head of policy and communications at the Prison Reform Trust, said:

“The chief inspector could not be clearer in her assessment of the failure of compulsory post-release supervision for short sentenced prisoners. While the reforms appear to have had no discernible impact on reoffending, recall rates have rocketed, disrupting lives and placing unnecessary pressure on an already overcrowded and overstretched prison system. Since its introduction, recall rates for men have increased by 29%, while for women they have risen by a shocking 166%.

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Man locking a prison

EXTENSION OF PRESUMPTION AGAINST SHORT PRISON SENTENCES

 

Commenting on today’s announcement (17 May) by the Scottish Government that an affirmative order has been published to extend the existing presumption from three to 12 months, Alex Hewson, Senior Policy and Communications Officer at the Prison Reform Trust, said:

 

“Today’s announcement is a welcome step in reducing our reliance on ineffective short prison sentences. It’s grounded in the evidence, and is a critical part of wider efforts to deliver more effective responses to crime that benefit society, and those convicted.

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Prison Announcement On Probation Reform

Commenting on today’s announcement (16 May) by the Ministry of Justice that National Probation Service will take over responsibility for all offender management, Peter Dawson, Director of the Prison Reform Trust, said:

 

“David Gauke’s pragmatism offers hope that the damage done to the probation system by his predecessor can eventually be repaired. Courts are crying out for a simpler system in which they can have confidence. In legislating to make these sensible changes, the Justice Secretary should take the opportunity to implement his policy to abolish pointless short custodial sentences. He can bring to an end the nonsense of people being subject to compulsory post release supervision, which has led to an explosion in the number of people recalled to custody but done nothing to reduce re-offending.”

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Prison Anti-Corruption Taskforce

Commenting on the Ministry of Justice’s announcement today (4 May 2019) that a new Counter Corruption Unit has been established, Peter Dawson, director of the Prison Reform Trust, said:

 

“This is a welcome announcement. Anyone who lives or works in prison knows that corrupting a member of staff is one of the most effective ways to get drugs in. But turning suspicion into proof and prosecution takes time and specialist input, so it is good to see this unit set up.

 

“The other half of the equation, set out in the prison service’s recently published drug strategy, is to reduce the demand for illicit drugs in the first place. That means both better treatment and a better way of life generally in prisons, so that prisoners stop seeing drugs as a way to make their sentence bearable.

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Peter Dawson Speaks About Safety In Custody Statistics

MINISTRY OF JUSTICE SAFETY IN CUSTODY STATISTICS

 

Commenting, Peter Dawson, director of the Prison Reform Trust, said:

 

“These numbers show that there is a very long way to go before our prison system is safe for the people who live and work in it. The rise in self-inflicted deaths is especially concerning.

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Prisoner in custody

Commenting, Peter Dawson, director of the Prison Reform Trust, said:

 

“These numbers show that there is a very long way to go before our prison system is safe for the people who live and work in it. The rise in self-inflicted deaths is especially concerning.

 

“Everyone will hope that the modest improvement in both self-harm and assault figures in the most recent quarter may be the start of a trend, although it is far too early to say. But it would be a mistake, when a change may have started to happen, to put that at risk. Rolling out the deployment of PAVA spray to all prison officers will undermine the relationships between staff and prisoners on which all aspects of safety ultimately depend.”

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Justice Committee Report On Prison Population 2022

JUSTICE COMMITTEE REPORT ON PRISON POPULATION 2022: PLANNING FOR THE FUTURE

 

Commenting, Peter Dawson, director of the Prison Reform Trust, said:

 

“This thorough report represents a welcome outbreak of cross party common sense about a complex problem. It should lay to rest once and for all the idea that governments can build their way out of the prisons crisis. And it rightly focuses on the need to implement ambitious policies rather than just announce more of them.

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Wheelchair behind bars- Prison Reform Trust

We welcome the ECHR’s inquiry on this important issue. Significant progress has been made in recent years supporting vulnerable defendants, particularly through the continued rollout of liaison and diversion services in police stations and courts across England.

However, far more could be done to ensure the justice system meets its duties under equality law, for instance through the increased use of accessible information, intermediaries and other reasonable adjustments.

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Prison Reform Trust

Reacting to David Gauke’s speech to Reform this morning, Peter Dawson, director of the Prison Reform Trust, said:

 

“The justice secretary is establishing a reputation as a thoughtful, balanced policy thinker, driven by evidence not preconception. This speech rightly rejects the pointless language of tough versus soft, and calls for an informed debate about how to punish serious crime in ways that are both effective and humane. It deserves a non-partisan response, so that we can ultimately achieve a penal system of which the country can feel proud rather than ashamed.”

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Record Levels Of Self-Harm, Assaults & A Rise In Deaths

Commenting on the Ministry of Justice’s safety in custody statistics, published on the 31st January 2019, Mark Day, Head of Policy and Communications at the Prison Reform Trust, said: