Saturday, 18 February 2017

Pounds Not People

An eerie silence seems to have descended. We appear to be treading water again and the blog may slip gently into a period of suspended animation, pending news of the next crisis of course. So, while we mark time, here's something I saw on Facebook recently to tide us over:- 

The latest from Noms!! We have to get evidence of housing quals and employment - we have to request this twice but no one is sure what happens when the majority of offenders don't provide this - then this has to be done for start and end of order release from prison, end licence end PSS. Any significant event such as change of job, and separate forms for each concurrent order - and it's related to CRCs being paid!! We were all gobsmacked!!

It's crap isn't it? We have endless emails about it in NPS about missing data. I've got too much to do so it's not at the top of my priority list.

Yep. We've been asked to do this for months.

It's total unnecessary bollox!!

The status is captured through a personal circumstance at the offender level so you shouldn't have to do a different form for concurrent orders?


Double/triple counting? Per Order rather than per person!

Yes per order!!

They are completely bonkers

We've been told we have to!! Also even if the licence period is a few days we still have to do a new one at start of PSS!!

Ffs

We have been told we have to record the data even if it the same as what is already recorded, so at termination if the info is the same we still have to close down the line and then re-open with the same data! Absolutely crazy.

It's just too bureaucratic

We have been doing this for some time in the CRC, the q's are built into our new Induction Pack and the Service Users seem accept it when presented this way at the induction.

Ever get the feeling you've been conned? Quote John Lydon (Sex Pistols)
Certainly not the service I joined back in 1999

It's been in our induction pack for ages but this is a new version with new rules!

Its all about £'s not people.....

37 comments:

  1. Excellent post Jim. So now that the initial calculations of the caseload/staffing shafting exercise have been shown to be fatally flawed this is the only way Spurr & the corrupt MoJ/Noms/PAPS crew can remedy the cashflow for their chums in the CRCs, i.e. ensure that every possible element of data is captured for every eventuality. Even though its been observed for some years that reoffending by a smaller core of cases is increasing the infallible pay-by-results formula now has to be by "events" not cases. So, one individual with multiple 'events' e.g. 3 x community orders + 2 x pss will equate to 5 x payment calculations for CRC.

    But it won't translate into 5 cases for whoever is inputting the data 5 times. Just another management accountancy sleight of hand to keep filling the bank accounts of the greedy globals whilst taking the piss out if the staff.

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    1. And the longer folk spend entering data, the less time they have to see their caseload...

      "It's crap isn't it? We have endless emails about it in NPS about missing data. I've got too much to do so it's not at the top of my priority list."

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    2. Sodexo CLCRC key aims for 2016/17:

      "Growth is an essential element of our strategy. It will enable us to offer a more diverse service provision to our service users and others and generate additional income to be reinvested by our CRC.

      We will grow our business by:
      * continuously developing our Rate Card to ensure our offer meets the needs of the NPS, other CRCs and Commissioning Bodies
      * demonstrating the effectiveness of our services through evaluating their impact on service users
      * generating income by bidding for and securing contracts to deliver related services within the community.

      In growing our business, we expect additionally to support our partner organisations’ growth by actively involving them in tenders and in our fee for use services"

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    3. Don't you just love this totally alien business shite!? Any other examples very welcome.

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    4. Grow the business is a crap notion staff are with them . Hardly reassuring they are all saying this rubbish however whet they really mean is We stand poised to savagely take over any other crc as soon as they hand back the keys then we can sack more staff and make more profits from total crap. Ratners said CRCs are still doing it total crap Tories made it and buy it.

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  2. Can I take this opportunity to remind folk of Numb Grayling's promises that CRCs would need to retain the experienced professional probation workforce to make TR work, quickly followed by a 35% cull of Sodexo staff in 2015, e.g. 123 jobs cut from a workforce of 340 in Cumbria & Lancs alone. More clearances are on the way across the country.

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  3. Not sure how many leaving WL by end of March, but 7 going from my office. This doesn't account for the ones already gone in the past 12 months.

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  4. See Russell Webster article:
    Manchester probation struggling to implement new model.
    Inspectors report on Greater Manchester

    The two organisations providing probation services in Greater Manchester were working well in some respects, but needed to do more to reduce reoffending. The Community Rehabilitation Company (CRC) also needed to do more to protect the public

    That is the overall verdict of Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Probation in an inspection report published earlier today (16 February 2017).

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    1. I think the inspector meant to say, "not working well in lots of respects" he must have popped out to another organisation and got confused.

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  5. Are the South West still waiting for their legal advice re Working Link's antics? Is the fight over?

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    1. Don't know about legal advice but I can't imagine it's over. They're real fighters there!

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    2. I had direct communications a lot has been going on reported and more to come in an information update. Overdue but something is holding them up Battles is far from over. Unlikely peace could break out in the SW probably not for a while yet from what is being planned.

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  6. How do we start a new thread on here?

    About time we started talking about the pay proposals and how they are progressing. We don't get paid enough for the crap we have to put up with. Stop colluding with em, NAPO

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    1. There is no collusion, as this normally supposes some parity of power between co-conspirators. Napo does not make the weather, it makes umbrellas - which you can get at a discount through its commercial arm, Napo Extra. I am surprised, given all the evidence, that you think Napo has any influence on pay rates.

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    2. Can't take seriously any claim we're underpaid. There are serious problems with the structure and progression of our payscales, but our pay compares very wwll to a lot or other comparable profesaions

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    3. only if you're on the top of the scale. I've been doing the job 7 years and due to the length of the scale 3 payband am taking home £200 less per month than colleagues with length of serice. That is not right imho.

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    4. Those of us still here after 33 years were where you are once upon a time. I started on £7,707.

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  7. Theresa May herself rocked up in my neighbourhood today complete with silver Jaguar, chauffeur, bodyguard and assorted Tory entourage. I'm afraid I was so angry didn't dare respond to the knock on the the door - my son heard my name announced - probation, prisons, mental health and social services,education, police, public transport, the disgusting treatment of benefits claimants and people with disabilities.... I didn't know I could stay calm.

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    1. Agree. Trump and Brexit noise drowning out scandalous regression of public services and no sign it will end soon.

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  8. 18.47 no it doesn't, not after 35 years when working with people who commit the most serious of crimes.

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  9. I'm afraid this accommodation and education recording is the culmination of the Probation Service Review. Oh an a load of extra controls to prevent some CRCs from cooking the books.

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  10. Since we're all part of Her Majesty's Paps why aren't London probation officers getting an extra £5000 too? Napo, where are you on this?

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-39014192

    "Prison officers at 31 jails in London and south-east England are in line for pay rises of up to £5,000, under a £12m package announced by the government.
    The increase means new starters could receive up to £29,500 a year."

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    1. So in theory a newly recruited prison officer also pretending to be an 'offender supervisor' will earn more than the probation officer with 10 years experience teaching them what to do in the prison omu.

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  11. "Ministers said they wanted to attract the "best talent". Prisons with recruitment issues are being targeted."

    Where is the £5000 recruitment and retention package to attract and retain the "best talent" for the many probation offices with recruitment and retention problems??

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  12. Probation becoming a mere monitoring function. No value attached to genuine rehabilitation process, as with everything, no understanding of the notion 'human being' and all that entails. We are governed by sociopaths.

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  13. Ah, come on folks, it was all sorted out in advance & everything has gone smoothly, just like clockwork. Let's take a peek into Hansard, starting with the visionary LibDem Lord Marks, House of Lords, Oct 2013:

    "I am not opposed to these reforms in principle. If they go well, they could lead to more diversity, to more imaginative and effective rehabilitation, to the provision of the new services, to lower reoffending rates, and to the prospect of fewer people in prison, with improved lives and substantial savings of public funds."

    Then we have the warm wirds of Lord Ahmab (con):

    "The Government are committed to ensuring that the market is not simply cornered by the big players... I turn to probation professionals and staff... The Government’s position remains that we cannot deliver these improvements unless we retain the skills and expertise of probation professionals as we move into the new system. Their excellence is not something to be ignored... We do not want to lose their expertise. That is why the national framework for the transfer of staff to the new system gives an absolute commitment to fair processes and protection for staff..."

    Over in 'the other place' we are reasured by the dulcet tones of the statuesque, eloquent Grayling on 30 Oct 2013:

    
"We intend to use the same systems across the public, private and voluntary sectors... there will be no question of people using different systems... the national public sector probation service we are establishing will, of course, be responsible for risk assessing all offenders supervised in the community and will retain the management of offenders who pose a high risk of serious harm to the public... I would rather the supervision of highest-risk offenders was in the hands of dedicated experts... As I have said, it will be a simple process. The national probation service team will be responsible for risk assessment. They will have a duty to carry out a new assessment when a person’s circumstances change, and it will be the duty of the provider [CRC] to notify the team of any material change of circumstances. They will be co-located, and when an offender becomes a high-risk offender, they will be taken back under the supervision of the national probation service. This is about people sitting in the same office and working together, just as people work together in any office environment."



    So, 03:50 & 04:09, there's your answer... NPS is already the hand-picked cream of the crop - "I would rather the supervision of highest-risk offenders was in the hands of dedicated experts", as opposed to the ham-fisted ne'er do wells we cast aside to the CRCs.

    All is going rather swimmingly, don't you agree?

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  14. and we don't sit in the same office or work together

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  15. So, in summary on a blurry Sunday morning can we therefore confirm that, as promised in the hallowed halls of parliament & democracy, TR has brought us:

    1. fewer people in prisons?
    2. lower reoffending rates?
    3. substantial £public savings?
    4. an open market not cornered by big players?
    5. retention of the skills & expertise of probation professionals?
    6. national transfer framework built on fair processes & protection for staff?
    7. no different systems for NPS & CRC?
    8. co~location of agencies?
    9. a simple process?

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  16. Liz Truss on Andrew Marr show this morning. "As Lord Chancellor I don't take legal decisions". Small mercies,small mercies.

    Liz is on Sophie Ridge show shortly. The entertainment keeps rolling.

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    1. We have the War Criminal to thank for this after his review in 2005:

      "The Committee recognised concerns that the combination of the office of Lord Chancellor with that of the Secretary of State for Justice could create the risk of a conflict of interest. We concluded, however, that this should not present an insuperable problem. Upholding the rule of law remains a central aspect of the Lord Chancellor’s role and in practice the office is given additional authority by its combination with a significant department of state."

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  17. I currently work within CGM ( owned by Interserve Justice / purple futures !!!). I was somewhat suprised at some of the content of the recent HMIP inspectorate report - it was rather weighted towards the views / opinions of senior management ( oh Kel suprise I hear you shout ) - apparently allocations between NPS and CRC is going well ( couldn't be further from the truth ) not sure if this is due to the PSC's ( Professional service centres ) who deal with allocations and enforcement - the powers that be told us that these centre's would free front line staff up to work more effectively with offenders , what happens here is that staff spend more time chasing up enforcement requests - breaches unable to be completed due to the poor quality of letters or letter not even being issued - UPW contacts not being updated with staff not having any idea if someone has actually attended ( at the start of the new year they had a massive backlog of hours to be inputted ). 10 day initial Oasys are supposed to be inputted by the PSC's however staff end up chasing these up which results in staff being left with very little time to complete ( like 10 days isn't bad enough ).
    We have IM's ( formally SPO's ) who have no formal Probation officer training / qualification ( no longer required to be a manager ) - they are now more like business performance managers who have to look after health and safety , estates management and imprest ( that was always going to work NOT ) they have no idea what they're doing so it's little wonder they're struggling to embed the interchange model !!!!.
    Managers are constantly banging on about meeting targets and service delivery targets otherwise we'll loose money ( back to being out fault again ) . We are constantly battling with the hokey cokey internet ( one minute your in the next your out - may also have something to do with staff being in charge of setting up IT systems that have absolutely no experience or skills in doing so ).
    We have so many new staff that through no fault of their own been dropped from a great height into roles with no case management ( some of these staff have been displaced from their previous roles when the initial changes took place - admin and UPW ). There is a feeling of total dispare from most staff , the environment is that of a dangerous one and yes we are not protecting the public but this is not down to damn hard work from front line staff but that we are constantly hindered by rubbish systems and proceedures. I could go on forever and as you can guess I missed the memo requesting I collect my rose tinted glasses.

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    1. And that's just the start of it. I too was disappointed at the report it certainly does not reflect the reality. Staff morale non existent, high case loads and sickness, staff leaving at some frightening rates. Those that are left behind can't cope and CGM are struggling to recruit especially PO's, no one wants to work for them. And this situation does not seem to be getting better, they have no answers to the mess and are flapping about like fish out of water. CGM needs to be handed back to the gov before anything serious happens either to the public or the staff.

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  18. I currently work in UPW in SWM CRC we are also told about targets not being met, but in reality no-one cares except the PDM's. We just keep plodding on hoping that the working atmosphere will get better, and some one in "senior management" will one day see the light, not like the most recent one who has seen the light following the mess she left us in and ****** off.

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  19. When probation services were held hostage by the government & the profession had its throat cut you could hear a pin drop. The prison service is certainly keen to make one hell of a racket.

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  20. Just watched Justice Secretary get off very lightly on Andrew Marr show on BBC i-player. She talked him out of time and he spent too long asking her about Brexit rather than focussing solely on Justice matters. No mention of mess in Probation despite upcoming review and no accountability about same in prisons beyond tacit acceptance of cutting too many Prison Officers. If positives can be drawn an increase in Prison Officers and idea of legal obligation of Prisons to have rehabilitate focus is welcome.

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  21. BBC Radio 4 Profile

    Liz Truss became the Lord Chancellor & Secretary of State for Justice last year, the first woman to hold either post. Her appointment was controversial, partly because she'd never worked in the legal profession.
    Becky Milligan talks to Liz Truss's brother, former boss and political supporters and opponents - and hears about her toughness, determination and love of karaoke.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08f4vyf

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    1. A profile which suggests Liz Truss is what you get when you subject young children to left-wing idealism then send them to Oxbridge: "she's more of a chuckle than a belly laugh."

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