This week the Ministry of Justice published a long-awaited review of custodial remand for children. This important document responds to concerns raised by the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse and the Justice Committee, and echoed by many others including the Howard League, about the ever-increasing proportion of children on remand in prison.
The news earlier this week that the government is seeking to extend the sentencing powers of magistrates is deeply disappointing. Legislation was passed in 2003 to extend the sentencing powers of magistrates, but it was never enacted for good reason.
A consultation is closing with Ministry of Justice stakeholders on strengthening the independent scrutiny bodies through legislation. The consultation itself took the form of an online questionnaire, but I thought it would be good to outline the Howard League’s response on my blog.
My third review of the party manifestos is a critique of Labour’s plans. Yet again we see scaremongering about rising violent crime, which, as I said about the Lib Dem manifesto, is a perennial problem, and I am disappointed that a comprehensive plan to address violence is missing.
Community service, or unpaid work, had been a success story for decades; that is until Chris Grayling destroyed the probation service and split it, incorporating it into the private community rehabilitation companies.
More prisoners will be given the opportunity for early release on temporary licence. This is another undoing of a Chris Grayling decision, which was taken six years ago and meant that thousands of men and women spent longer in prison and were denied the opportunity to find work, spend time with families prior to release and acclimatise themselves to the real world.
Last week, I had the huge privilege of delivering the 2022 Howard League Lecture in honour of Lord Parmoor. You can watch a video of the lecture here and/or read the transcript below. The lecture was titled “‘Son of a convict’ – law, human rights and the politics of punishment”. —– It is a huge […]