Under the Justice Secretary's proposals 70% of Probation Service work will be delivered by private and voluntary providers. This will include child protection cases, violence against the person and domestic violence cases, offenders with vulnerabilities and mental health problems, sex offenders and offenders at high risk of reoffending, such as prolific burglars, chaotic drug users and gang members. This will mean only an approximate 50,000 offenders, of the 240,000 currently managed by Probation, will continue to be managed and rehabilitated by Probation. This will pose huge risks to the public and victims of crime, end the effective local community partnerships Probation has built up, and put approximately 18,000 Probation staff at risk of redundancy.
If the Probation Service is dismantled and privatised, many offenders will no longer be supported to make the necessary changes in their lives, as the 'results' may not be quick and lucrative enough to private firms. Privatisation of a service such as this is very risky, especially if it is money orientated, as true and accurate 'results' may not be reflected in reality. Businesses want to make profits, not losses. Low to medium risk offenders can turn into high risk offenders overnight. People working with offenders should be well trained and skilled professionals.
Public sector Probation should continue to deliver this function in its entirety – the Justice Minister must be urged to consider public safety and abandon his plans.
Tuesday, 15 January 2013
As part of its Oral Heritage Series, THS announces the release of its new film, “Joyce Povey.” The feature consists of an extensive interview by Ian Mobley, recorded in Summer 2012. Joyce Povey speaks about Sale, Cheshire, as she has known it, with particular reference to Arran Avenue, where she lived from 1933-1946.
Tuesday, 4 September 2012
Trafford Heritage Society Heritage Open Day in Sale. Don’t miss the opportunity to enjoy a day of heritage in Sale this weekend ! On Sunday (9th Sept), Sale Town Hall will be open from 11am to 4pm, in celebration of national Heritage Open Day. The organisers are Sale Civic Society, the registrars, Waterside Arts Centre, Local Studies, local councilors, and Cofely. The history of many local government facilities and services will be illustrated in a number of events and displays. There will be a children’s trail quiz, and refreshments will be available in the Gallery Bar and the Lauriston Gallery.
Walkden Gardens 3rd August 2012 Will Shakespeare celebrated his 454th birthday this year, and one of many fitting tributes to the great man was presented by Folksy Theatre in Walkden Gardens. The touring company, which is engaged in a punishing schedule of appearances, gave an excellent, one night only, performance of ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ in the gardens on Friday evening 3rd August. The principal players were outstanding, particularly Beatrice and Benedick, whose verbal sparring raised a constant stream of laughter from the audience. It’s not only that this talented company gave a performance of a four hundred years old play with a freshness as if it was written yesterday, but also that they conjured a delightful entertainment with a few props and some music, in what is essentially a garden. This kind of performance has of course some advantages over the more formal stage. Benedick, struggling to find a new voice as a lover, a role into which he was unexpectedly pushed, began one scene at the very back of the audience and made his way quite slowly towards the front, picking his way between the deckchairs and picnics, seeking sympathy and inspiration from any playgoer who might offer help. Don John, the ‘baddy,’ was denied the same sympathy and booed for his pains; and quite properly too. A bit of pantomime is never out-of-place in a performance of Shakespeare. Dogberry the Constable was creatively portrayed with the help of a glove puppet which looked suspiciously like Basil Brush. And when Claudio was finally reconciled with Hero, the ‘aaaw!’ factor was palpable. The rain kept away and the evening was warm. What fortunate times we live in, and how lucky are we to be able to enjoy a great piece of theatre in such a lovely setting. Thank you, Friends of Walkden Gardens and Happy Birthday Will ! Wilfred Darlington