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Howard League Blog

Informal comment from the charity

  • 3 Oct 2022
    “This sentence is a living hell”

    The Howard League is to hold a fringe event at the Conservative Party Conference this afternoon. The title is ‘What’s the future for prisons?’ and the scandal of sentences of Imprisonment for Public Protection (IPP) is likely to be among the topics that come up for discussion.  Read more

  • 23 Sep 2022
    “I can’t win”: How it feels to be a girl in a boys’ prison

    Prison is no place for a child. But those children who find themselves in the care of the state should be given every provision and support needed. Unfortunately, inspection reports released this week show that girls across the youth custodial estate are being failed by a system inadequate to house or care for them.  At the time …  Read more

  • 22 Jul 2022
    2022 Howard League Community Awards deadline extended

    After a challenging couple of years with the pandemic, and now the added pressure of a growing cost-of-living crisis, it is particularly important that we recognise the outstanding individuals and projects helping to reduce crime and keep our communities safe.  Read more

  • 19 Jul 2022
    Anyone with a positive story to tell should enter the Howard League Community Awards

    One of the greatest moments of my first few months in office was when our win was announced at the Howard League for Penal Reform’s 2021 Community Awards, writes Cleveland Police and Crime Commissioner Steve Turner.  Read more

  • 4 Jul 2022
    A step towards a more humane criminal justice system

    For the past three years, the Howard League for Penal Reform has been campaigning against archaic legislation which allows courts to send acutely unwell people to prison as a ‘place of safety’ or for their ‘own protection’. Last week, the government published a Draft Mental Health Bill which would finally remove this option.  Read more

  • 30 May 2022
    Howard League Community Awards 2022

    Encouraging desistence from crime through diversion and other interventions – that keep people out of the criminal justice system – is more humane, fairer and more effective than the alternatives of custody, fines and imprisonment. This idea underpins the work of the Howard League. It is also the focus of grassroots projects up and down the country.  Read more

  • 26 May 2022
    ‘Son of a convict’ – law, human rights and the politics of punishment

    Last week, I had the huge privilege of delivering the 2022 Howard League Lecture in honour of Lord Parmoor.  Read more

  • 26 May 2022
    The prison system after Covid-19

    Last week, the Criminal Justice Joint Inspectorate (CJJI) published a progress report on the impact of Covid-19 on the criminal justice system. It describes a system where fatigued staff are struggling to deliver adequate services, and no agency – least of all prisons – is back to ‘business as usual’. This bleak description will be familiar to anyone who has followed the Howard League’s blogposts about life in prison during the pandemic.  Read more

  • 6 May 2022
    Young people’s experiences of prison during the pandemic

    Earlier this year, we invited Howard League members in prison – and members with a loved one in prison – to share their experiences of imprisonment during the pandemic. In April, we built on this by asking young people on our advice line what the past two years had been like for them.  Read more

  • 22 Apr 2022
    The impact of restrictions on visits during the pandemic

    This is the third blogpost in a series on Howard League members’ experiences in prison during the pandemic. It focuses on what members told us about the importance of visits, the impact of no longer seeing family members and friends, and how much harder they have found visits with restrictions.  Read more

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