Sunday, 17 May 2015

Bleak Futures Week 20

Maybe not a psychopath but possibly a Thatcherite moron carefully chosen because he's callus enough to finish the job. This is the same Michael Gove that wanted to dismantle the NHS and issue personal health accounts instead. He then moved on to bullying and intimidating the teaching profession. The end result was receiving a public vote of no confidence by the entire teaching profession. It's worth noting that while this was happening our probation leaders were cosying up to Chris Grayling just like they'll cosy up to Gove. The only plus is that he's not bff's with the PM.

Prepare for the swarm of introductory and congratulatory emails about this Tory appointment when you open Lotus Notes on Monday morning. I'd like to optimistic or believe that nothing can be worse than Grayling, but alas I'm struggling with that. With a Justice Minister and Lord Chancellor at the helm with no education or experience of the CJS I doubt the next 5 years will be positive for any of us. Anybody taking bets on long will it be until probation officers issue a vote of no confidence in Gove?

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Give Goves a chance before giving him a hammering before he has even started his role. For people who are supposed to be non judgemental a lot of judgements are being made on here. If you're unhappy then find a new job. Whether you're CRC or NPS, it is what it is and nothing can change things, so whatever your grade or role, get on with the job you are paid to do!!

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Do you mean JFDI?

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Sorry but have to applaud the JFDI response because that is the message we get daily - it does not matter that on a daily basis it's falling apart, teams are being depleted in one way or another JFDI. Going to quote that at SFO hearing.

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All we want to do is "get on with the job we are paid to do" but therein lies the problem. The processes seem to change by the week, the tools we are using are woefully not fit for purposes (specifically IT and constant workarounds that change then change again).So perhaps what we really need is for leadership to be shown by those paid to do so. This is NOT a practitioner problem - we are working amazingly well to deliver the work we do. It is a serious senior management failing.

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Most who comment on here have a sense of social conscience. Whether it's Gove, Grayling or any other 'officer' of our neolibreral right wing government is almost irrelevant. The issue is ideology plain and simple. It's not the person charged with the 'enforcement' of that ideology that rankles people most, it's the ideolgy itself that most people find abhorrent.

These next five years of ideological doctrine will no doubt spell out the Tory parties 'final solution' for public services. Gove, Grayling who cares, they're just figureheads in different offices, delivering an ideological paradigm that 80% of the population don't actually agree with or want.

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How do we assess risk of reoffending, risk of harm? On previous behaviour. Look at Gove's recent history and we have an idea of what's coming. Ask a teacher.

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We look at past performance. Gove has been Education Secretary in the previous Con-Dem gov and in my role as a School Governor I know exactly what is he is capable of. There is much to worry about with his appointment, he is equally unsuitable as his predecessor. There is little I would look forward to in his appointment.

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I too am very concerned about Gove but any Tory they'd give us would be a disaster. We know what's coming, a long hard 5 years. We thought the last five had been tough!!

I want to talk about the probation training, slightly off topic I know. I fear that our professional qualification is being watered down too much for the sake of getting some newly qualified PO's through the door. Within two months we had one trainee writing a report for Crown Court. How did that happen? I was so shocked. Even worse she wasn't even observed conducting the interview with the offender. How can this be a professional service? Really? Same with NPS PSO's, they can't hold any cases so they are thrown into Court with little training. It's just awful. I care about my profession deeply and feel it's being torn apart. Long term it will do us no favours!

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Well good luck with your debate and discussion with Mr Gove. My view is you'll find him in place to finish the job off that his predecessor started. His "management" of education should already show you that he is not one to listen to reasoned debate from the masses or even those in the know. His hands may be tied, but I see no evidence in the man that he will fight to reverse the damage already done.

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Part of me is wishing I went into the CRC as I feel that I am now at greater risk of being made redundant once the cuts start. Of equal concern is how our TPO's must be feeling knowing that they are doing nearly 2 years training and most likely not guaranteed a job at the end. I know Gove left Education following the Teachers passing a vote of no confidence, can we do this with this Tory Government??

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I thought we did put a vote of no confidence in Grayling, he responded with a 'big gone peasants!' I have nothing against these trainee's, many are talented and committed to doing the job but I'm concerned that they are all under 25 and female. I saw one on twitter complaining about having to clean her room. If that's all that worries her in her life, how can she relate to the cases she's supervising. I know lots of PO's who entered the service years ago as new graduates but to recruit so many on block isn't healthy for the service. I imagine they will be kept and we will be made redundant for standing up for the true values of probation.

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TPO's are cut price staff to fill in the gaps, then there is no prospects of a job after training.

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Charlie Falconer is good news. He is knows about Probation and was a great support for the brief months after he took over from John Reid when the MOJ was created. He was the one who said " it's time that the sun came out for Probation" Today we need a miracle rather than the sun!

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I have re-read the posts and comments across the last week, a week in which we have all been stuck with a long 5 years of a Conservative government, where I fear we will regret that they are no longer Condems. And what is everyone on about? NPS vs CRC; young vs old; social work vs crim justice training; client vs probation officer? If we carry on in-fighting and whinging like this (oh, I forgot, PO vs manager) we will just disappear in a puff of Delius outage. Do something, stop effing banging on about what someone else hasn't done. Join something, get out, speak out, work with your clients, do what you can, please just stop fighting each other.

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I work in an office with a young female manager who seeks to rule by isolating the majority of her team and surrounding herself with yes men. This seems to pass for 'management' these days. So this in-fighting as you say whilst being divisive is actually encouraged in some quarters. Better to have a few quislings than be at odds with an entire team....

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When are NOMS going to look at the link between long term stress and particular managers? Say for example someone gains a temporary appointment and suddenly staff stress related sickness increases then that person is then appointed as a manager and staff stress sickness increases, would it not be prudent for SOMEONE to make the correlation?

Use grievance procedures I hear you cry. But what if that person is such a bully that no-one dare? What if that new manager is merely doing the bidding of a senior manager and so has no sanctions to his/her behaviour since they would be the person to hear the grievance. Yup, no point at all. I think whistleblowing to the HSE can't be far away in terms of staff stress levels and the management of this.

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Repeatedly I have suggested that grievances are monitored and managers questioned and penalised over excessive rates. How else do you detect discrimination for example? Instead the managers are promoted.

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I have been in a situation where the entire team bar one was bullied by a new SPO. I was the only one who pursued a grievance. We were labelled as trouble makers and the manager had arse covered by senior management all the way. I eventually escaped to another office. You can have all the bullshit policies in the world, snr management don't want to know. That which didn't kill me made me stronger. I can laugh about it now but it's a nightmare when it happens. A tip for statements. Keep it factual and evidence based. Keep notes on a daily basis. Keep opinions to yourself and adopt a neutral tone. Good luck.

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I believe that people are venting on here as it's better than doing it in an open office. I have had to stand up for myself in an open office on two separate occasions, not nice. However, back off and do your job and leave me to do mine has worked. I don't want to say this but the sooner everyone knows where they stand the better.

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The thing is that the horrors of a newly-elected Tory majority government and our troubles as a newly-privatised, disintegrating public service are inextricably linked. We should all stand together because worse is on its way for the public services, welfare benefits and further attacks on Trade Unions. Those of you who aren't in Napo or left Napo should really consider joining again. This is where we could make ourselves stronger and more able to face the onslaught of the Tories scorched earth policy towards the state and its vital functions.

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Trade unionism in the UK is under threat. The irony is that trade unionism started in the UK because of the ways in which people were treated by employers. The threats to the movement come from all areas of society but the biggest threat is undoubtedly ambivalence. I understand that 28% of the UK workforce are union members. The issue is that only about a quarter of these are willing to stand up and be counted. The idea is to stand together. Without that collective consciousness, we will be unable to fight the powers that wish to use us at their whim and discard us without concern. Trust in your leaders and your employers will bring you nothing but disappointment.

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Why are Kent, Surrey and Sussex recruiting to the extent that they are???

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Because we are totally understaffed on the coal face and won't be able to fulfil the contract? More highly paid managers always useful/needed??

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We, in Cumbria and Lancs, having previously been told by Sodexo they want rid of 30% of us, are just waiting to see when/if/how this will happen. No chance of any recruitment for us.

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A member of CRC staff (PO) walked out sick today after having had a panic attack at their desk. The amount of work is just overwhelming and looming/missed deadlines contributed to the attack. This was in full view of an open-plan office.

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Same happened in NPS NE same area two very capable POs. Both off for months with work place stress...made ill by work...disgraceful.

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Dedication is one thing, dedication to the point of collapse is another. Pleease look after yourselves.

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In our middle size office there is something interesting happening. CRC staff are spending even less time with clients/offenders and spending all their time on ridiculous OASys targets. Meanwhile, in the NPS there is a sense of calm and thoughtfulness - reflective practice perhaps. People are talking about practice all the time, and a move away from group based interventions to more individualised pathways of work. Bloody hell - despite the CRC owners talking about client centred approaches and desistance all the time, it is actually taking hold in the NPS.

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I've never considered OASys as an effective tool to assess or predict an offenders risk. In fact I'd go as far as saying it's actually pretty rubbish in terms of assessing risk. The only real value in OASys (IMHO), is to provide the supervising officer with a document that provides evidence that they've followed due process and protocol in their duties whilst supervising an offender.

To that effect it offers some form of protection to the supervising officer when something goes wrong or have to account for their actions when a client commits an SFO. Once the detail contained in the document becomes diluted, any value it may have had as a method of risk assessment is gone, and as a document to evidence due process and practice it no longer provides the officer any protection at all. In fact it becomes a document that can be used against the supervising officer in the event of an SFO.

The less detail that goes in, the greater the risk to the supervising PO. I think it's time to get rid of OASys altogether now as it provides no value to client, PO, or public protection, and the unions need to keep copies of any instructions given to dumb down the detail in the assessment.

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The Purple People Eaters model of OASys reinforces my view that the new CRC providers are seeking only to maintain the illusion of risk management. As long as it LOOKS like they are doing it, the Quality Assurance structures will be satisfied.

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If combined with a thorough PSR, and genuinely reviewed following significant change of circumstance, the above guidance might actually make OASys useful. The trouble is, it's a long time since I saw a thorough PSR - at least in the sense of one that had all relevant current and historical information in it. This isn't meant as a criticism of PSR writers, by the way - it's the fault of the report factory system that we've ended up with.

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Whatever the rights and wrongs of the systems involved, isn't it a worrying development that things are reverting to the bad old days of quantity over quality? All those lessons we were to learn from SFO's etc, all worthless. The general public are not stupid and will ask that very same question, just as they have in respect of all the serious case reviews for children killed under our noses from Marie Colwell to Baby Peter! Shame on this frightful, heartless and witless government!

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Just to put the record straight, I am DipPs qualified and Maria Colwell and Victoria Climbie featured heavily in my training and since training have done specific training about outcomes from Lord Laming's reports 1 and 2 (Victoria Climbie and Peter Connelly). Can we stop the social work rules debate starting up again please. Sometimes we work within the training provided.

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"sometimes we work within the training provided..." - The current level of training provided does not provide the kind of training required to work with complex needs and issues which many offenders have.

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Sounds like Purple Futures are starting to lay their stall out as all of our Area's CRC staff have now been put on standby and told that the current buildings are unsustainable due to cost and plans are afoot to move us out. This is being hindered due to the Gateway problem with the IT system. Sounds like there is a workaround that they are currently testing and then we'll be gone. The big question is where to? Does anyone know about the buildings - will CRC have to give landlords notice or do MOJ own them?

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CRC offices in Newton Aycliffe (County Durham) and Bishop Auckland apparently closing and staff moving to Darlington. There is talk up there about their CPA having one or two hubs then staff doing home visits to clients who do not live near the hubs. Appears the ball has started rolling.

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If our office closed the other CRC offices are so far away that the OMs from the closed staff would constantly be doing home visits as no offenders could get to the new office. It would literally mean a day trip out. Unless we did home visits and rang a hub and the duty officer updated delius from our phone-in.

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ARCC is the Durham Tees Valley CRC and sounds to be the best by far - think it is the only staff mutual? I think they are closing all offices and will have two hubs, staff working from home using tablets. Staff seem pleased from what I've heard. Also a colleague there said the best of the managers went to ARCC.

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I work for ARCC as a OM. There are some teething troubles which are most likely due to TR and the working model but things are fairly positive but very busy. I think if something serious goes wrong then most, if not all OM's could claim to have high workloads. Probably the only thing that is spoiling what could be a prosperous venture.

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"... some teething troubles most likely due to TR." Thank you for one of the most amusing & innocent understatements of 2015. Good luck. x.

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Day trips to reporting centres, that will conflict with the requirement to be available and looking for work 5 days a week

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Same for most CRC's GATE IT is a massive hold up. RAR groups not in place in some areas.

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With ORA cases, how are people enforcing induction & info gathering appointments for sentence planning? Those appointments don't fall under the RAR as far as I'm aware or do they and essentially count as 2 days?

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Wales Working Links CRC offices were measured up last week. The guy even measured the ladies loo. Thought maybe we were having new carpets until then.

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I've heard that some offices in the DTV area CRC are on their knees due to a large percentage of staff being directed to prisons for TTG.

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Yep, we lost 4 OM's and 2 admin in our office. We are pretty much fire-fighting now. I agree 100% with what my colleague wrote about staffing levels. If my manager addressed this then ARCC has potential. If not then.. We are now starting to get a lot of post ORA custody cases and this is only going to go one way...

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The stripped back OASys should be a godsend to you lot then.

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It is. As long as they have NEVER had one or more of the following concerns:
DV
Violence
Child Protection
Witness Intimidation
Lots of D&D
Sex offences
Abuse
Childhood abuse
Adult abuse
Victim of DV

The list goes on. Looking at my caseload and it's safe to say that I can do a big fat raspberry to the thought of completing a T1 OASys. So yes, it's a veritable boon.

52 comments:

  1. With all of the plans towards people working from home and completing more home visits , there doesn't seem to be any conversation about staff safety. Many years ago, 2 people were murdered at the home of a family they had visited many times before and that was in the days when Probation and Social Services were viewed as helpful and positive.

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    1. With regard to more home visits and traveling around, it may be worth just noting for reference issues that are occuring in other outsourced services.
      Mitie are in trouble this week, and although not probation, it's worth noting just what they're prepared to do to extract as much profit as possible with regard to home visits and traveling.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-32715728

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    2. that's just shocked me to the core. sometimes we drop our guard and we must be mindful of our own & each others safety at all times. Do you remember the name of the case because i'd like to read up on it - or do you remember the circumstances?

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    3. In the UK it has predominantly been people working as Social workers, commonly when completing home visits, that have been killed. However, in the States there have been many Probation officers. As we move more towards the US models of 'working', the risk of similar responses may be likely to rise. Just 'google' Social Workers / Probation Officers killed / murdered.

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    4. When the number of home visits increase, and the services and time to deal with clients issues decrease, you end up entering clients homes where they are increasingly frustrated and angry about not being able to resolve their problems, view the home visit as an intrusion rather then a point of assisstance, and thats not a good recipe for a safe or harmonious relationship.

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    5. i always feel uneasy when i do homevisits to known single males and yet when you turn up one of their 'friends' is there. It's very disconcerting. I'm meticulous about ringing the office once i'm out but i'm wondering if i should ring when i'm going in aswell.

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  2. Home Visits, please read and reflect how long before it is us?

    www.dailymail.co.uk/.../Charity-worker-22-visited-mental-health-patient..

    www.independent.co.uk › Life › Health & Families › Health News

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  3. I don't really get this Home Visit business. Of course we all know that HVs have a place and usefulness, but the new models of mobile working seem to make them the norm. It's useful, but very inefficient. We also know it is difficult to sequence multiple visits and get the timings right. I wouldn't mind an increased flexibility in home visiting, and work in general, but all I can see so far is the CRC demanding people stay at their desks to do assessments.

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    1. We can't stay at our desks - there aren't enough. Not enough rooms/desks/terminals. Home visits & tablets/laptops are the future.

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    2. From 2008:

      "Speaking as the tragedy unfolded on Monday, Chris Cheetham, cabinet member for adult and community services at Lancashire County Council, said: "My first thoughts are with his family and friends. It is a dreadful loss.

      "I don't expect to get messages saying a member of my staff has been killed.""

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  4. CRC MANCHESTER AND CHESHIRE17 May 2015 at 21:47

    I remember when I did a home visit some time ago. After 30 minutes or so, I went out of the house only to discover my vehicle had been damaged (the windscreen had been smashed and door panel had been kicked in). I tried to claim for the damage against my employers insurance but was told this would not be possible. I raised the issue with my manager, his manager and eventually went to the union only to be told that the work policy does not cover it because the damage was committed outside of my normal work place. Despite numerous emails and complaint I got nowhere, eventually resigning to the fact that I was not going to get a single penny towards the cost of repairs.

    In protest I stopped using my vehicle and instead began using public transport. This added approx an additional one hour and thirty minutes on top of what would usually have taken 30 minutes visit in my vehicle from the office to the home visit and back to the office. To be honest this helped greatly with the work load. Yes it was dramatically reduced. They cann’t make you work when your not in the office. In addition they cann’t make you use your vehicle if you choose not to use it.

    In fact other colleagues took on board the same experience and very quickly we had a rebellion. Other colleagues stopped paying the additional insurance cost by removing the clause which included for ‘work purposes’.

    This was my victory and something I was very proud of. If your employers don’t give a toss then why should I. We all have power and sometimes people just need courage to stand up and fight for what they believe. I took the first step and others followed. We all can do our little bit. Never give up the fight.

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  5. Headline in Financial Times today 100,000 Civil Service jobs to go says Osborne.....
    so here we go NPS to be the fall guy....I predict that MOJ will claim that now CRCs have bedded in the private sector CAN manage high riskers....|

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    1. Not going to happen for a myriad of reasons. Please be careful what you post on here, anxieties are through the roof for both NPS and CRC and predictions like that are not helpful.

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    2. Nature abhors a vacuum and rumours are rife. Recent HR approaches to Probation staff have been appalling. The future for all parties is bleak whether we are in NPS or CRC or whether we stay or go. Predictions are possible - e.g. 'Probation will be a parody of it's former self'.

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    3. So I assume that will be the end of NPS gloating about there job security

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    4. Reminds me of a song by Beyonce... ''What goes around comes around... '' la la dee

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    5. yep NPS in our area swanning around like they are superior to us so as is human nature I cant help but feel it's payback time. I hope NPS area managers will be looking a the CRC staff/caseload ratio - some of us went from 40 to 80 cases and so this is evidence it can he done. Some of my NPS PO colleagues have a large proportion of their cases in custody so there isn't the management intensity as with community cases - I hope management look at that too.

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    6. Hi anonymous 12:26. What approaches by HR, and which CRC are you in? Thanks.

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    7. I meant the national approach to sifting, of conning PO and SPO staff into the position of being made redundant. We all complained that we were beinf forced to make choices without the full information. The simple question is, how many of us would have 'chosen' to move into the CRCs if we knew then what we know now? If the redundancies were foreseen by the Trusts as our employers (and to be fair, many of us DID see it coming albeit not in the numbers concerned), there is no way this would have been allowed or completed in the time allowed for it. THAT was the redundancy process, not what happens now. The HR processes operated locally were not the fault of the Trusts but of Grayling and the MoJ. In short, 1,000s of POs and SPOs have been robbed of their futures by a malicious and malevolent Ministry that could not and cannot see the value of the work undertaken by those they have betrayed. People's anger and malice towards those who perpetrated this injustice is nothing to do with professionalism and everything to do with being a victim. The identity of my area is of no concern. This innjustuce is universal.

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    8. Can't help but read behind the lines of the person who seems to relish posting about their NPS colleagues " gloating". There certainly isn't any gloating or anything to gloat about where we are,

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    9. CRCs already assess all prisoners 1 - 1 for TTG and run in prison programmes so why not outside?

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  6. Plan for the worst hope for the best. Not worth keeping ones head in the sand about the possibility of changes in T and Cs or job losses. We were not split to remain the same........ Something has to give and it is usually a human cost of a reduction in staff complement..........

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    1. Pretty interesting article here in the guardian from a perspective not heard very much.

      http://www.theguardian.com/public-leaders-network/2015/may/18/visiting-dad-prison-public-sector-mistreat-people

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  7. H E L L L L O O O O O ! ! ! Hellooo.... helloo... hello.. ello... lo... lo

    N A P O ? .... Napo? .... Napo? ....napo? ..... apo? .... po?

    Is anybody there? ...There? ...there? ... there?

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  8. Speak to your local chair, smartarse.

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    1. So clearly not smart enough in your impatient view. As a napo member I do keep in touch locally but hands & feet are tied here; so I'm frustrated by the national silence. Everyone seems lost in a vacuum, but here's the rub... there wouldn't be any sound, let alone an echo, in a vacuum. So yah boo sucks to me!!

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  9. Re 16:33, 17:00, 17:13. What vile comments! 'Payback time'(?) . Hard to believe these were made by proffesionals. FYI In our area NPS were grossly understaffed so NPS were the ones overloaded. As for the amount of people in custody, I had more out in the community than all of the POs who went to the CRC had on their community caseloads as well as those inside with oral hearings parole reports rolling in etc! (this was pre and post split and probebly the reason that that I ended up in the NPS after the 'sift' which in our area was based on 'risk'. ) Since the split I've not seen anyone 'swanning around' we all know we're in the mire, if those in CRCs lose their jobs we know we could be next. I feel for my wonderful colleagues in the CRC when they have said they had little to do and believe they do for us she they saw us rushing around like blue ar**d flies. (..and I picketed and lost pay as I saw others walk past me in the strike and would do so again in an instant if a strike against CRC redundancies were to be called). OK I believe we're all in this together but I'm glad I don't work alongside you lot and I pity your clients if they are also so sorely judged.

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    1. Hear hear anon 19:34

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  10. Missive received from working links chief about how pleased he is with the general election result...twat. Meanwhile crc leaders seem embarrassed their foot soldiers aren't dropping everything to complete a ridiculous staff survey.

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    1. The Staff survey it to assess all job roles, see where there are overlaps and act accordingly.
      This was on Twitter from CRC ACE S.W Wales Ella Rabaiotti retweeted
      Rebecca_Jones @RedShoeBizWoman · May 16
      From my blog - Top tips on motivating your workforce to be more enterprising without extra pay http://is.gd/WISZdF

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    2. I'm sure the election result went down really well in WL areas!

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    3. That survey is a massive waste of time and there's something very sinister about it

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    4. Union advice is not to complete survey

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    5. I have had sight of that email from working links

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    6. i heard today that one of the big chiefs from Purple Futures has taken up a post at Working Links. He didn't last long.

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    7. Increasingly desperate emails being received from senior managers about completing the WL survey, saying it "only" takes 30 minutes, and apparently we can minimise the length of time it takes by only answering questions about our "core tasks"... so do you want it filled out properly or not? Sounds like someone's bonus is at risk...

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    8. I've heard that Deloitte is doing a business review of WL and the survey is part of that. They are looking to merge some job roles.

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  11. It is apparent to anyone who is looking closely at the developments as they progress (an inappropriate word if ever I saw one) that the practices in each rea, each CRC and each piece of the NPS are getting more and more diverse and inconsistent. The offender experiences across England and Wales are getting increasingly variable and the supervision of cases in Somerset will be radically different to that that occurs in Kent, Surrey and Sussex. Cumbria and Lancs will look nothing like West Mercia and Greater Manchester will look nothing like London. All of this is potentially undermining the idea of consistency in sentencing. One wonders if it is even legal to have that level of variance. Transferring cases mid Order will be interesting!

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    1. And the P.I.?
      Anyone know what the f*** it's purpose is?

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    2. To absorb money and produce hot air i guess.

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  12. " It is apparent to anyone who is looking closely at the developments as they progress (an inappropriate word if ever I saw one) that the practices in each rea, each CRC and each piece of the NPS are getting more and more diverse and inconsistent".

    With this in mind, it's very concerning to hear the deafening silence of the unions.
    In the next couple of months the Tories will pass a bill that will stop industrial action being taken unless voted for by at least 50% of membership (thats 50% of membership- not 50% of those that respond to ballot).
    The unions abillity to take action will be very much reduced.
    The privateers are well aware of this, and are happy to develop their business models behind closed doors ready for implementation as soon as the Tories announce they've all but crippled the unions. Then they're free to do whatever they like fully aware of no resistance from unions, and no reprisals from the MoJ.
    I really do believe this is why Sedoxo have 'wound their necks in', (for the moment), regarding redundancies and Terms and Conditions.
    They can just sit back and wait a few months until no-one has the power to challange them.
    If people think it's bad now, don't wait for the rainbow, it's going to get much worse!

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  13. From HMIP -


    "Transforming Rehabilitation - Early Implementation 2 - Date of publication - 19 May 2015 - Inspection type - Inspecting Adult Offending Work - Area - England and Wales

    http://www.justiceinspectorates.gov.uk/hmiprobation/inspections/transformingrehabilitation2/#.VVr1GlLXuUx "


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    1. Adult probation services under the government’s Transforming Rehabilitation programme presented a mixed picture, said Paul Wilson, Chief Inspector of Probation. Today HM Inspectorate of Probation published a second report on the early implementation of the government’s Transforming Rehabilitation programme.

      The report, Transforming Rehabilitation – Early Implementation 2: an Independent Inspection of the Arrangements for Offender Supervision by HM Inspectorate of Probation relates to findings from inspections undertaken between December 2014 and January 2015. Inspectors looked in more detail at the Risk of Serious Recidivism tool which helps inform whether cases are allocated to a Community Rehabilitation Company (CRC) or remain with the National Probation Service (NPS).

      Prior to June 2014, probation services in England and Wales were delivered by 35 Probation Trusts working under the direction of the National Offender Management Service (NOMS). The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) introduced a programme, Transforming Rehabilitation, to change the way those services were delivered. A newly created National Probation Service was set up to focus on work with high risk of serious harm offenders and providing advice to courts on sentencing. Most other work with low and medium risk of serious harm offenders is now delivered by Community Rehabilitation Companies .

      Overall, inspectors found that many of the challenges identified in the earlier inspection remain. There is still the need for IT systems to better support the way adult probation services are ordered and delivered. A number of tasks at the pre-allocation stage are time consuming and not streamlined. There are now effectively two risk screening tools, the Case Allocation System and the Offender Assessment System. Many of the NPS and CRC staff interviewed expressed doubts about the value of completing the Risk of Serious Recidivism tool at the pre-allocation stage for certain categories of offenders who were automatically going to be earmarked to one or other of the organisations.

      However, inspectors were pleased to find that:

      most cases were allocated to the correct organisation in a timely way;
      where risk escalation processes were started these were generally carried through swiftly; and
      the small sample of offenders who were interviewed gave positive comments, despite the changes of supervisor experienced by some of them as a result of the NPS/CRC reorganisation.
      In order to drive improvements, inspectors made a further 20 recommendations, including suggesting that NOMS streamlines its processes for completing Risk of Serious Recidivism, and considers reviewing its guidance so that the tool does not need to be completed for cases that will automatically be retained by the NPS. This would save time at court where NPS staff already have to undertake additional tasks as a result of Transforming Rehabilitation.

      Paul Wilson said:

      “Given that we are still in the early stages of the implementation of Transforming Rehabilitation, it is not surprising that we found many of the challenges identified in our original report still remain. In what is clearly a fast moving and complex programme of reform, this inspection confirmed that it will take time for a number of the issues to be resolved. It is also true to say that some of the challenges identified by our inspections pre-dated the introduction to Transforming Rehabilitation, and some of the issues are in the process of being addressed. On the ground too, National Probation Service and Community Rehabilitation Company staff are working collaboratively to ensure a good standard of delivery of services.

      “There is much still to do to streamline processes and reduce bureaucratic burdens that could stifle innovation. There remains too the need to continue to review and improve IT systems and processes, so that this supports the business of delivering effective, quality services to offenders that contribute to reducing reoffending and the protection of the public.”

      Delete
    2. I am beyond disappointment after reading the report. The Inspectors promised us anonymity,, 'say whatever you need to say' they said, then asked specific questions about middle and higher management in terms of the support they were giving to staff and how they were operating as managers. But then NOT A DICKIE BIRD anywhere in the report to reflect what we said (and what they hinted had been echoed by the other areas)? So why ask, why give the impression they wanted to hear about managerial support, and then not refer to it ANYWHERE? Where's the honesty and transparency in that - if you wanted the info for other purposes, just say so. And don't then come passing subjective judgement on what you are told in good faith as part of me explaining my dire working conditions (ie my 'indefensible' decision not to do an ISP). Because YOU asked the question. An independent Inspectorate? I think not. An Inspectorate with a predefined (read Tory) agenda to confirm all is bedding down nicely under TR? Definitely.
      Deb
      Andrew, I trust you will put me right if I've actually overlooked it, and then I will post a fulsome retraction and apology.

      Delete
    3. I only read the press release, I don't have the commitment to trawl through it all.

      Splitting probation on its own was enough to increase public risk and further make continuous professional relationships with clients less likely, which is what wrecks the spirit of probation.

      Plus not being a current practitioner I cannot measure my experience against what inspectors reported.

      Sorry

      Delete
  14. Whitewash ....

    ReplyDelete
  15. Adult probation services under the government’s Transforming Rehabilitation programme presented a mixed picture, said Paul Wilson, Chief Inspector of Probation. Today HM Inspectorate of Probation published a second report on the early implementation of the government’s Transforming Rehabilitation programme.

    The report, Transforming Rehabilitation – Early Implementation 2: an Independent Inspection of the Arrangements for Offender Supervision by HM Inspectorate of Probation relates to findings from inspections undertaken between December 2014 and January 2015. Inspectors looked in more detail at the Risk of Serious Recidivism tool which helps inform whether cases are allocated to a Community Rehabilitation Company (CRC) or remain with the National Probation Service (NPS).

    Prior to June 2014, probation services in England and Wales were delivered by 35 Probation Trusts working under the direction of the National Offender Management Service (NOMS). The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) introduced a programme, Transforming Rehabilitation, to change the way those services were delivered. A newly created National Probation Service was set up to focus on work with high risk of serious harm offenders and providing advice to courts on sentencing. Most other work with low and medium risk of serious harm offenders is now delivered by Community Rehabilitation Companies .

    Overall, inspectors found that many of the challenges identified in the earlier inspection remain. There is still the need for IT systems to better support the way adult probation services are ordered and delivered. A number of tasks at the pre-allocation stage are time consuming and not streamlined. There are now effectively two risk screening tools, the Case Allocation System and the Offender Assessment System. Many of the NPS and CRC staff interviewed expressed doubts about the value of completing the Risk of Serious Recidivism tool at the pre-allocation stage for certain categories of offenders who were automatically going to be earmarked to one or other of the organisations.

    However, inspectors were pleased to find that:

    most cases were allocated to the correct organisation in a timely way;
    where risk escalation processes were started these were generally carried through swiftly; and
    the small sample of offenders who were interviewed gave positive comments, despite the changes of supervisor experienced by some of them as a result of the NPS/CRC reorganisation.
    In order to drive improvements, inspectors made a further 20 recommendations, including suggesting that NOMS streamlines its processes for completing Risk of Serious Recidivism, and considers reviewing its guidance so that the tool does not need to be completed for cases that will automatically be retained by the NPS. This would save time at court where NPS staff already have to undertake additional tasks as a result of Transforming Rehabilitation.

    Paul Wilson said:

    “Given that we are still in the early stages of the implementation of Transforming Rehabilitation, it is not surprising that we found many of the challenges identified in our original report still remain. In what is clearly a fast moving and complex programme of reform, this inspection confirmed that it will take time for a number of the issues to be resolved. It is also true to say that some of the challenges identified by our inspections pre-dated the introduction to Transforming Rehabilitation, and some of the issues are in the process of being addressed. On the ground too, National Probation Service and Community Rehabilitation Company staff are working collaboratively to ensure a good standard of delivery of services.

    “There is much still to do to streamline processes and reduce bureaucratic burdens that could stifle innovation. There remains too the need to continue to review and improve IT systems and processes, so that this supports the business of delivering effective, quality services to offenders that contribute to reducing reoffending and the protection of the public.”

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. - Most cases allocated correctly & timely - nowt new there cos admin staff know their onions
      - Risk escalation carried out swiftly - it takes a lot of CRC time & effort to submit, but 30 secs for NPS to knock it back
      - Offenders are "positive" - not sure about that either.
      - IT needs to be improved - wow!
      - Reduce Bureaucratic burdens - I can't believe my eyes!!

      Well done Paul, lad. Outstanding & innovative. Cutting edge, even. You've got the job. That's a nice pension pot you've secured for yerself. The first casualty of nepotism is the truth.

      Delete
  16. Off topic, but just nice.
    Could be Jim soon I guess?????

    http://m.guardian-series.co.uk/news/12959740.Crime_novels_inspired_by_probation_worker_s_time_in_Walthamstow_to_be_reissued/

    ReplyDelete
  17. With the MoJ actively seeking to link itself with the Saudi justice system, some may be interested to see what job oppertunities this may create.
    Just shameful!

    https://uk.news.yahoo.com/wanted-executioners-whats-behind-saudi-arabia-job-posting-171613183.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They've had Oasys out there for centuries...

      Delete
  18. Working Links have some sort of programmes running in the Middle East.

    ReplyDelete