Aug14 14/08/2019 11:48:00 by Emily
We are delighted Sarah Beresford is presenting at the INCCIP conference today on her work on the impact of maternal imprisonment on children.

Read Sarah's briefing 'What about me?' here
Aug12 12/08/2019 16:24:00 by Emily

Commenting on the government's announcement of a sentencing review, Peter Dawson, director of the Prison Reform Trust, said:

“A review should start with some facts. Sentences for violent and sexual offending have gone up very substantially over the last 15 years. After the appalling fiasco of the discredited IPP sentence introduced in a similar atmosphere in 2003, courts now have the option of extended determinate sentences which do everything the Prime Minister says he wants. And polling over many years has shown that the public consistently underestimates the actual severity of sentencing for serious crime. 

"Stoking up public anxiety with unevidenced assertions is a poor way to start a review that needs to take a dispassionate approach to a complex issue.”

Commenting on the government's commitment to build additional prison places, Peter Dawson said:

"Doing away with overcrowded and outdated prisons makes a lot of sense. But governments have been promising that for decades and they always underestimate what's involved. According to the prison service 's own figures it would take 9000 new spaces just to eliminate overcrowding - not a single dilapidated prison could be taken out of use before that figure was reached. Current projections suggest a further 3000 new spaces will be needed just to absorb sentences already passed. And we know the aggressive rhetoric of "prison works" invariably drives up the use of imprisonment long before the capacity to deal with that has been created.

"Half baked policy on prisons always runs up against inconvenient reality. Tough rhetoric is no substitute for understanding the evidence. "

Aug1 01/08/2019 11:57:00 by Emily
Today we have published our updated 'Why Women' briefings.

These documents provide a brief, concise and informative explanation on the need to focus on reducing the imprisonment of women in the UK.

Download England and Wales here

Download Northern Ireland here

Download Scotland here

Download Wales here
Jul25 25/07/2019 14:15:00 by Emily

Commenting on the latest safety in custody statistics published today by the Ministry of Justice, Peter Dawson, Director of the Prison Reform Trust, said:

 “The faint hope that our prison system might have turned a corner has been dashed by these numbers. Prisons are still getting more dangerous as places where people have to live and work.  More people than last year chose to take their own life rather than endure it. When an individual prison hits rock bottom, the government reduces the number of prisoners it holds – but it continues to ignore the obvious truth that it is the prison system as a whole that is grossly overcrowded. Ministers talk about having recruited more staff, but the problem will only be solved by having fewer prisoners.”

Jul17 17/07/2019 14:00:00 by Emily
Today the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Sophie Linden launched the London Blueprint for Women in the criminal justice system.

We welcome the Blueprint, and thank our Senior Programme Manager Katy Swaine Williams, along with all the other agencies that contributed to its publication.

As the Deputy Mayor announced, the Blueprint "aims to tackle the root causes of offending, prevent reoffending and ensure women have the support they need after leaving prison."

The Blueprint will be available in September, please get in touch with any queries.
Jul15 15/07/2019 17:03:00 by Emily
Jenny attended the launch of Sisters in Desistance today at Bradford's Khidmat Centre.

She heard powerful testimony from Muslim women who had found their voice with support from Sofia Buncy and the Muslim Women in Prison Project.

Our 'Counted Out' report referenced echoed the need for Community based solutions for Muslim women post prison. Istaq Ahmed said it was long past time to end the institutional inequalities that disadvantage so many Muslim women.

Speakers included West Yorkshire's PCC, local women's prisons, mosques and many community organisations pledged to take action on the reports recommendations.

Read the report here