On 25th October the Arts Alliance hosted the Anne Peaker debate on considering the case for the inclusion of arts practice in the CJS. This Youtube channel hosts clips of interviews with people who took part in the debate.
In this series of comments on Radio 4, Will Self talks (Friday 7th October) about why prisons fail. An element of what makes this such a good, short opinion piece is Self's glorious use of language. It takes a historical view of the current prison crisis and considers changes in British society as well as the conditions in our criminal justice system.
This article considers the Prisoners' Earnings Act, which proposes to give 40% of prisoners' wages to Victim Support. The article notes the reponse of The Howard League, the Prison Reform Trust and Victim Support.
Comments from Frances Crook from the Howard League seem particularly important from my point of view.
The Telegraph's opera and arts critic, Rupert Christiansen, comments about the work in this year's Koestler Trust exhibition. The work is by both prisoners and those serving community sentences and incorporates 'art' in its very broadest sense, and is opening tomorrow at the Royal Festival Hall.
Despite the rhetoric of the 'rehabilitation revolution' in the CJS, much creative provision in prisons is being affected by public sector spending cuts.
As is always the case with newspaper articles, the comments are often exceptionally disheartening. These are less so than the ones on the Guardian website!
This scoop tells of an outreach project run by the Science Museum in two of London's prisons. It explains the project, which involved prisoners and their families & reminds me of the work done by Storybook Dads, which tries to ensure the connections between prisoners and their children.
Thanks to @glittrgirl for pointing this out to me and @alicebell for the original tweet.
This lengthy article is a nice mix bewteen narrative, description and links with policy and practice. It considers the nature of being in a YOI and includes a lot of quotes from the young men themselves.
Like most newspaper articles, it still insists on calling those housed in prisons and YOIs 'inmates'.
Last week saw the execution of Troy Davis for a murder he said he did not commit. Right up until his execution he maintained his innocence. This article by Erwin Jamesconsiders the role capital punishment plays in a 'young civilisation' and considers whether executions are justice or vengance.
With a headline that draws the reader in to the debate on docking benefits from those involved in last month's disorder, this article is about much more than that. It's considers the role of work, benefits and parenting orders in the grand scheme of fixing 'Broken Britain' (I loathe that phrase). Not only this, but it tells of the role of Louise Casey, the former 'Respect Tsar'...
A fascinating article about youth crime and gangs in the 19th century. It talks of the use of lengthy sentences in order to deter other young people from taking part in gang activity and the gradual up-tariffing of crimes associated with young people. The article also makes comments about the comments of letter writers to the Manchester Guardian, which gloriously echo the trolls you can find on the Guardian online comments pages.
This also mentions the role of the police court missionaries, which is always good to help teaching about the history of the probation service.