Our submission to the House of Commons Justice Committee inquiry into 'Transforming Rehabilitation' has now been published on the Committee's website.
Whatever the government's original intentions, we argue in the submission, the Transforming Rehabilitation programme 'is sabotaging, rather than transforming, probation work across England and Wales'.
Rather than 'attempting to make a badly-designed system work slightly less badly', we call for the government to 'draw a line under the mistakes of the past and... place probation on a coherent and sustainable footing'.
Contracts with the private probation companies should be 'brought to a close as soon as possible', according to the submission. And we call on the government to 'launch an open and inclusive review... seeking the views of a range of stakeholders'.
In a damning report last week, the Chief Inspector of Probation, Dame Glenys Stacey, observed that 'none of government’s stated aspirations for Transforming Rehabilitation have been met in any meaningful way'. She went on to 'question whether the current model for probation can deliver sufficiently well'.
Earlier this week, the National Audit Office revealed that the government had bailed out the struggling private probation companies to the tune of hundreds of millions of pounds.