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Goodbye Probation Trusts

Probation Officer / June 29, 2015 at 8:39 PM 1,222 views

I wanted to write this blog ahead of June 2nd, which will mark my first day working for the new National Probation Service. I am deeply saddened to be writing this blog and to the end of the Probation Trusts.…

TR [Transforming Rehabilitation] Week One

/ June 29, 2015 at 8:39 PM 1,645 views

Below are a series of comments and reactions from probation staff and readers of Jim Brown's On Probation Blog on the first week of Transforming Rehabilitation. Some people are hoping the 2nd week of TR is better than the 1st.…

Runners and riders

/ June 29, 2015 at 8:38 PM 1,706 views

We were told yesterday in a typically-upbeat MoJ press release that were only 35 bidders wanting to go head-to-head next year to win a share of 'coveted' rehabilitation contracts across England and Wales. Who are Chris Grayling's spin doctor's trying to kid…

Omnishambles on track!

/ June 29, 2015 at 8:37 PM 1,331 views

As Napo delegates head off to the Welsh seaside resort of Llandudno for their AGM, there's news that Chris Grayling's TR omnishambles is progressing well on all fronts. First there's a stark warning from the Prison Governor's Association that a…

The silence is broken

/ June 29, 2015 at 8:36 PM 1,048 views

I'm extremely grateful to John Steele, who must be applauded for deciding to pop his head above the parapet yesterday and speak up in defence of probation's leadership. I've given my reply below and would very much welcome hearing what…

Resistance is futile!

/ June 29, 2015 at 8:36 PM 1,034 views

Sorry, but I just couldn't resist the title - 'resistance is futile!' It helps keep our film analogies going, and it also got a mention at the Brighton Napo public meeting last week by Professor Paul Senior. Oh, and we know it's what Probation…

Leaked memo: Exclusive

/ June 29, 2015 at 8:35 PM 1,102 views

The following memo from the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Justice to the Minister has come into my possession and I thought it I would share it with readers:- Minister, You asked me to brief you on progress with…

Musical chairs

/ June 29, 2015 at 8:35 PM 1,545 views

It's a good job Joe Kuipers, Chair of Avon and Somerset Probation Trust, tells us what's going on, because no one else does. In his latest blog post he reveals that all CEO's had to gather round their screens at…

Spend to offend (the outsourcing of probation)

Richard Johnson / June 29, 2015 at 8:35 PM 14,105 views

The Ministry of Justice has set out the proposed payment mechanism for the forthcoming “rehabilitation programme” contracts. The mechanism appears to be a relatively straightforward and robust funding model. However, despite the rhetoric about a “rehabilitation revolution”, this is the…

The probation thing

/ June 29, 2015 at 8:35 PM 1,285 views

Somewhere in the answer from the Parole Board ordering my release there is a slightly woeful passage pointing out that my Probation Officer will have their work cut out. It seems that I am "challenging". Not that this is related…

Big ideas

/ June 29, 2015 at 8:33 PM 1,285 views

Chris Grayling, the Minister of Justice, has two big ideas. The first is Payment by Results and we all know what a roaring success that's proved to be over at his last job with the Department for Work and Pensions.…

The wake

/ June 29, 2015 at 8:33 PM 1,225 views

I've attended a few wake's in my time and although always highly emotional, there's normally a laugh or two involved as we fondly remember the life of the departed. This one was different though for several reasons. It was dry,…

Dangers of censorship

/ June 29, 2015 at 8:32 PM 5,016 views

Lifers may be released from prison, but we are never free. We continue our sentence in the community, liable until death to be recalled to prison. This is a detail of our – my – existence which is rarely appreciated…

From the archive: The revolving door of reoffending

Alex Cavendish / July 22, 2014 at 8:39 PM 6,001 views

I’m not sure who actually coined the phrase ‘revolving door’ in relation to prisons, but it’s been used by plenty of commentators, including the current Chief Inspector of Prisons Nick Hardwick, often to describe the pattern of prisoners who have…