We were delighted to have been invited to be in the audience at the Prime Ministers’ speech today where he announced plans to overhaul prisons in a new pilot scheme.

The scheme, which will see the creation of six ‘reform prisons’ in England and Wales, aims to tackle high levels of violence, drug use, self-harm and re-offending. It is expected that legislation will follow so that the plans can be adapted more widely.

We are pleased to hear that as part of these plans, government is focusing on the need for improved and expanded education in prisons, and on greater autonomy for the best public sector Governors to work creatively with voluntary and private sector agencies to develop innovative approaches.

We are also encouraged to hear the PM's thoughts on how the use of more sophisticated electronic tagging might reduce the need to imprison pregnant women and mothers with their new born babies.

We will be working with government to advise on how the planned new prisons can offer people real opportunities for rehabilitation. We particularly look forward to working with the MoJ to advise and support the development of prisons that support positive family relationships on release as we know that this is key to reducing re-offending.

To find out more about the work we do to support prisoners and ex-offenders, please click here.