Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Probation Nightmare

Having a couple of members of the family work in the public sector in social roles, though not in the probationary service, I have respect and sympathy for the people who were supervising these thugs.

It is a thankless job, when you think about it. The public are suspicious of you because they think you are some kind of blinkered do-gooder. The people in your supervisory care see you are an impediment to their futre life, what ever that is meant to be. And the government cant be bothered to either give you enough funds or even enough staff.

Your job is simple. Look after people after they are released and attempt to help them make the quite enourmous jump form convict to worthwhile member of society. You have no say on whether the person should have been released or not, that is down to the psychs, your bosses and the prison service. You are given minimal amount of information about the person - like the chances they will reoffend.

Not suprisingly, rather a lot of people on probation commit an offense. What you weren't watching the criminal 24/7? What do you do all day? Huh? Lovely people the forgiving public, with some prodding from the press.

But we have a problem here - people do commit crimes, and a lot of them do it while on parole from a previous crime. Some people have no real interest in rehabilitation. They are not bright enough to realise that they will probably be caught again - they are in the parenial ga-ga land of "Yeah, see me is too clevah to get caught by the bill, right!"

WE need better assesments, we need to be more ruthless. We need to take more heed of not where the criminal has come from but where they think they are headed. And if we are going to use parole, then we better bung some moeny at it before any more people get killed.

It is a tough world this.

BBC NEWS | England | Berkshire | Sixth man guilty of girl's murder

Read more at news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/eng...