Labour Research November 2016


Warning over prison contracts

Probation union Napo has called on the government to rescind probation contracts awarded to private companies. 

The call followed the publication of a report that is highly critical of the government’s “Through the Gate” resettlement scheme for short-term prisoners, set up as part of the government’s Transforming Rehabilitation (TR) reforms.

An inspection of Through the Gate resettlement services for short-term prisoners, a joint report by the Inspectorate of Probation and the Inspectorate of Prisons, warned about the number of offenders on the scheme who have been recalled to prison. 

The TR reforms involved breaking up the probation service, with a large part handed to private companies who are now funded by the taxpayer to provide support for short-term prisoners.

Inspectors found that services provided by the firms were poor or non-existent with too many prisoners reaching their release date without their immediate needs having been met or even recognised. Inspectors were also concerned by the high rate at which people had gone on to re-offend and been recalled to prison.