The Resettlement of Short-Term Prisoners

Maurice Vanstone, University of Wales
Peter Raynor, University of Wales
Sam Lewis, University of Wales

Earlier research involving two of the authors confirmed that the voluntary throughcare of short-term prisoners has virtually disappeared as a probation service activity in the United Kingdom. This paper presents the findings of the evaluation of the Resettlement of Short-term Prisoner Projects set up under the Crime Reduction Programme in response to that finding. The projects are sited in seven prisons, and were established to focus on the resettlement needs and (in some cases) the offending behaviour of prisoners serving sentences of less than 12 months. The main research objective is to assess the impact of that work, but the research team are concerned also with whether those projects that include a programme designed to address offending behaviour have a greater impact on reconviction than those that address only practical resettlement needs. In order to compare the six projects in their ability to address practical resettlement problems and tackle offending behaviour, outcome data were collected on attrition and reconviction rates, changes in resettlement problems and changes in attitudes/knowledge /skills. The paper will report on those outcomes (apart from the two-year reconviction study which is not yet complete).

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Updated 05/20/2006