Provide grants to probation charities or lose sector’s support, Clinks tells government

12 Apr 2019 News

Clinks, the umbrella body for criminal justice charities, has called for the government to provide direct grants to charities in its reforms of probation services.

Following a highly critical report on the government’s £900m Transforming Rehabilitation programme by the chief inspector of probation last year, the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) announced its decision to end current probation contracts early and consider a new model for probation from 2020 onwards.

Yesterday, Jess Mullen, Clinks’ head of policy and communications, published a blog outlining the umbrella body’s recommendations for the new model.

She said that to ensure voluntary sector involvement, the future probation model must:

  • Simplify the system and reconsider the commitment to contracting out
  • Provide grant funding
  • Tackle inequality
  • Ensure a local response
  • Provide opportunities

She said: “MoJ and Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service must seize the opportunity to put in place a model that will fully address the flaws in the current system and bring the sector with them in the delivery of a future model.

“If they don’t there is a danger that voluntary organisations will decide that getting involved in the delivery of future probation services presents too great a risk.

“As a result statutory services will lose the support of the sector’s 200 year legacy, experience and knowledge of working with people under probation supervision.”

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