Our August 2015 ebulletin is out now!

Monday, 31 August 2015


Private companies and immigration detention
Our Director, Richard Garside, was quoted in The Financial Times this month talking about private sector companies running immigration detention centres. Read more here.

Criminal justice matters
In case you missed it, the 100th issue of our magazine, cjm, is out. It includes contributions from Jamie Bennett, Joe Sim, Peter Squires, Robert Reiner and Barry Loveday on a notable event or topic from the last 26 years. Building on our UK Justice Policy Review conference from March this year, we also have longer essays from David Ford MLA, Northern Ireland Justice Minister; Kenny MacAskill MSP, the Scottish Justice Secretary between 2007 and 2014; Rt Hon Elfyn Llwyd, a member of the House of Commons Justice Committee between 2010 and 2015. It's all free to view online.

The next issue of the magazine on the theme of #blacklivesmatter and edited by our Deputy Director, Will McMahon, will be available in September.

Organising for change
This month Dr Sarah Lamble of Birkbeck, University of London, gave the staff here at the Centre a great presentation about how to balance short-term reform goals with long term change. Watch a recording of her talk here!

Are we being followed?
Did you know you can keep up to date with our news, comment pieces and articles via twitter? Follow us here.

A little help from our friends
We have now made it easier for our friends and supporters to join the Centre as a member. If you like what we do and want to help us do more of it, then please consider joining for less than 60p a week! That's £30 per annum or £20 if you are on a low income.  


Life after life: going free
Former probation officer, Mike Guilfoyle, reflects on his time supervising 'Denis'.

Summer scorchers
Our most viewed online comment pieces from July and August were:

You can read more from our Comment pages, here


What do young black Londoners think about the ethnic penalty?
On Thursday, 3 September we're holding a consultation event in conjunction with the 20:20 Change Foundation to seek the views of young black Londoners about their experiences of institutional racism and the 'ethnic penalty'. This event is invite only but if you would like to know more about it or host a community consultation on the ethnic penalty then please email our Deputy Director Will McMahon.

When evidence and politics collide: The David Nutt affair
On Monday, 14 September we're holding a roundtable to explore what happens when scientific evidence clashes with political calculation. Professor David Nutt will be at the event and we'll be drawing on the lessons learned from the 2009 clash between him and the former Home Secretary Alan Johnson over the role of evidence in drugs policy.

What shapes trends in crime?
Drawing on new research, this event on Friday, 18 September will discuss why crime rose so much during the 1980s and the implications for current policy. Places are strictly limited for this invitation-only event. If you would like to receive an invitation please email to request a place.

Alternatives to custody: second national workshop
On Wednesday, 23 September we're holding a workshop bringing together practitioners and experts in probation and other fields of criminal justice to understand: how to improve the support of those with learning or communication difficulties; and the risks and challenges presented by the push for universally available restorative justice. Read more about it and sign up here.

ESRC Impact Acceleration event on alternatives to custody with a special focus on violent crime
On Friday, 25 September, our Director, Richard Garside, will be speaking at a workshop where the preliminary findings of research led by economist Siddhartha Bandyopadhyay on the relative effectiveness of non-custodial sentences will be presented. See the full list of speakers and sign up here.


Did Kid's Company become a political football?
Camila Batmanghelidjh, speaking on BBC Radio Four's Today programme, defends how the now defunct charity she founded, Kid's Company, was run. Earlier in the programme, Kathy Evans, Chief Executive of Children England, the umbrella group for the children's voluntary sector, describes the collapse in funding that the children's charity sector has experienced because of spending cuts as a result of the banking crisis. 

Building community safety
Ejeris Dixon's article on the website, Truthout, discusses the potential role of 'transformative justice' in addressing violence and harm experienced by black people in the US. Read more here.

Austerity as bureaucratised and organised violence
Dr Vickie Cooper's article in OurKingdom talks about how we can think of austerity as organised violence. Vickie spoke on this issue at our 2013 'How violent is Britain?' conference, and an event in 2014 about austerity as an act of violence.

How can we build a just society?
The Reclaim Justice Network is organising a public meeting to discuss the campaigns and organising to downsize criminal justice. It is taking place in London on 10 September. More details here.


10,639 - the number of male self-harm incidents in prisons in England and Wales in the year to March 2006.
20,409 - the number of male self-harm incidents in prisons in England and Wales in the year to March 2015.
8,277 - the number of individuals self-harming in prisons in England and Wales in the year to March 2015.
7 - the number of homicides in prisons in England and Wales in the year to June 2015, the highest levels in the last ten years.

Source: Safety in Custody Statistics, quarterly update to March 2015


''It's not sustainable, not only in terms of money terms, but I don't think it's acceptable in terms of the risk. And if you've got police officers ultimately spending a lot of their time doing social work you get to the point of actually saying well perhaps we ought to employ more social workers, even if indeed that means fewer police officers. Because ultimately we are using the wrong professional to deal with this issue'. Sir Peter Fahy, Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police, calling for a new approach in responding to vulnerable and missing teenagers on BBC News at Ten on 4th August 2015.


Do you have a paper copy of the British Journal of Criminology?
It may have been the fall of the Berlin Wall or the Japanese stock market crash that distracted us, but we failed to save any copies of the journal from if you have one and don't need it could you please get in touch. Email

If you have been forwarded a copy of this ebulletin and would like to subscribe directly, register your details
This bulletin was compiled and edited by Matt Ford and Rebecca Roberts. We are always keen to hear from our readers. For comments and feedback email  

More on