Even before the announcement was made, I notice that another new organisation has entered the fray, the Independent Probation Alliance, with a strongly-worded statement that begins:-
So what will be in the Government’s response to the consultation paper on Transforming Rehabilitation, due out tomorrow? We would love to be able to say they had listened to the concerns of those with first-hand knowledge of working with offenders who have raised fears about the riskiness of the proposed new model. But there is not only a track record of not listening, they have “gagged” those in the profession who have tried to voice those worries. What sort of a society do we live in that stops that professional voice, thereby leaving the public seemingly unaware of what is happening and the impact of these plans on public safety?
What’s more, the information being given out about probation is disingenuous and misleading at the very least. The public needs to understand and be better informed about what is happening, and the true position of probation in terms of its significant role and the value of the profession must be represented more truthfully.
In fact there is no evidence at all that the government has listened to the many reasoned and critical responses submitted during the 'Transforming Rehabilitation' consultation exercise and instead are determined to plough on with privatisation. Alan Travis at The Guardian outlines what is proposed:-
More than 50,000 short-sentence prisoners a year are to be given new 12-month compulsory supervision orders under rehabilitation plans run by private companies and charities to be announced by the justice secretary, Chris Grayling.