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McArthur: Lack of address increases reoffending risk

May 10, 2017 1:00 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Responding to the HM Inspectorate of Prisons (HMIPS) report into HMP & YOI Polmont, Scottish Liberal Democrat justice spokesperson Liam McArthur commented:

"The Chief Inspector has highlighted similar issues time and again. Young men at Polmont are not taking up opportunities to learn and gain new skills. More than a third are released without an address to go to, reducing their ability to get a job, education or to access the most basic services. That is no way to reduce the risk of their reoffending.

"Nobody should ever be left at the prison gate with nowhere to go or without the skills they need to start afresh. That is why Scottish Liberal Democrats have consistently argued that Scottish ministers need to ensure there are no barriers to accessing purposeful activity and throughcare, ensuring that support starts on the inside and seamlessly continues after release.

"It is also worrying that 'enemy management' seems to be defining what goes on in this facility to such an extent. Staff should be trusted to resolve situations where possible, rather than have their time consumed by keeping so many people separate."