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Privatised probation service is failing prisoners
21.6.17
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"Prisons and probation services are failing to meet the needs of newly released long-term prisoners, one in seven of whom end their sentence with no idea where they will spend their first night on the outside, according to a report which campaigners called "devastating".

The damning report into the national Through The Gate (TTG) resettlement scheme was jointly released on Wednesday by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Probation and Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Prisons.

It described how prisoners suffering from mental illness and addiction struggle to access services after leaving, while many are released without anywhere to live because of a lack of housing and delays to state benefits."

See: The Privatised Probation Service Is Failing Newly Released Prisoners, A Report Warns (BuzzFeed News, link)

And: Privatised probation programme 'could be dropped with negligible impact' (The Guardian, link):

"A key part of the government’s probation privatisation reforms could be dropped tomorrow without any impact on the resettlement of prisoners, a joint report by the chief inspectors of probation and prisons has warned.

In what critics dubbed a “devastating report on a growing scandal” Dame Glenys Stacey, the chief inspector of probation, and Peter Clarke, the chief inspector of prisons, say that the work done by the 21 community rehabilitation companies in the government’s Through the Gateprogramme is having a negligible impact on reducing prisoner reoffending rates, two years after its introduction.

The chief inspectors say that too many prisoners have been released not knowing where they would sleep that night, that in too many cases prisoners’ risk to the public had been inadequately assessed before release, and despite much talk about the use of mentors, they could find only one prisoner out of a sample of 98 who had been mentored."

See the report: HM Inspectorate of Probation and HM Inspectorate of Prisons: An Inspection of Through the Gate Resettlement Services for Prisoners Serving 12 Months or More (pdf):

"There is much more CRCs should be doing to make a difference to the lives of those they are meant to be helping, but we found them focusing most of their efforts on meeting their contractual targets, to produce written resettlement plans. Responding to the needs of prisoners received much less attention, but meaningful expectations are not specified clearly in CRC contracts, and good, persistent work is not incentivised or rewarded sufficiently."

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