Pact Warmly Welcomes Lord Farmer’S Recommendations For Women Prisoners And Urges Government To Act



Pact warmly welcomes Lord Farmer’s recommendations for women prisoners and urges government to act

Commenting on today's publication of Lord Farmer’s new report into what works for women in prison and their families, Tina Parker, Director of Services for Pact, urges the Ministry of Justice to ensure its recommendations are fully implemented.

As a charity which works in women’s prisons, in courts and communities across England & Wales, with the women themselves and with their children and families, Pact welcomes the new report published today by Lord Michael Farmer (18th June 2019), and the emphasis on healthy relationships as the ‘Golden Thread’ that should run through the Justice System. We urge the Government to adopt Lord Farmer’s evidence-based and well-researched recommendations on Early Intervention, Community Solutions and Better Custody, as part of a refreshed strategy to reduce re-offending, improve outcomes for children whose mothers have committed offences, and reduce suicide and self-harm.

We particularly welcome:

  • The recommendations to allow mothers to make arrangements for the care of their children as part of standard court procedures.
  • Increased investment in Voluntary Sector Family Engagement Workers and the employment of prison-based Social Workers.
  • Improving the Assisted Prison Visits Scheme to provide more financial assistance to families who cannot afford the costs of long distance visits to primary carers in prison.

We also warmly support a greater emphasis on diversion from custody and the use of community sentences for women who currently face short prison sentences which harm dependent children, housing and employment prospects and fail to address offending behaviour.