THE PENAL SYSTEM, BLUEPRINT FOR THE FUTURE

I am about to begin writing a report as in the heading for this post. As an ex offender with several sentences under my belt and as someone who has worked in various parts of the voluntary sector for many years and who has used my incarceration to research prisons and prisoners I feel I am very well qualified to approach this task both objectively and non-sensationally.
I have also written, and had published commercially, three or four books based on various aspects of the penal system.
My report will be totally non-political, independent and objective. Anyone who feels that they have anything to contribute to this work is cordially invited to contact me via the Contact Form at the end of this post.

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MINISTRY OF JUSTICE

5 PEOPLE HAVE HANGED THEMSELVES IN bRITISH PRISONS THIS WEEK.
When will the Ministry of Justice remove it;s blindfolds and ear defenders and wake up to the realities of what is happening in the British prison system? It never will, certainly not during the lifetime of this Government which is only interested in profit, definitely not in people. I would really like to see exactly what links MoJ staff and ministers have to Serco and G4S. Would really be interesing to know how many shares are held and by whom.

SUDBURY ABSCONDS

Once again the Mail on Sunday is headlining 4 absconds in a week from Sudbury OPen Prison in Derbyshire. Of course four absconds in such a short time is far too many but as I’ve said in ealier posts the selection procedure for prisoners considered for open conditions is really where the fault lies and that is determined by finance rather than any other reasons. Until the Ministry of Justice gets this right nothing will change. But that’s not really what this post is about.
Iknow it’sthe way things are but why can’t the media focus just for once on the many positives aspects of open prisons?
I have served a sentence, albeit a relatively short one, at Sudbury and I can say from first hand knowledge that there are lots of positives.
Firstly, a number of charity shops in Derby are partly manned by Sudbury inmates. Added up over a year that must equate to thousands of hours. Secondly, a number of local factories and even more so farms rely on the prison for labour. Yes, the men are paid at the going rate. Part of these wages are paid into an account to provide a lump sum to help te guy on his eventual release but a portion of it also goes to the prison to pay for the mans keep thereby redcing the burden on the tax payer. Also very obviously the inmate is being trained in the work ethic, very useful in the case of a large number of prisoners who, before their imprisonment had never worked.
Look at the numbers, in any one year thsands of guys pass through Sudbury. In that period there may be at the outside a hundred or soabsconds, as a percentage the proportion is miniscule.
So get real, cut out the sensationalism and let/s look at things as they really are.

MY CHRISTIAN BIRTHDAY

Just been working on the proofs for my book and have become very emotional reading about how I reduscovered my falth in 1996. Really was a very emotional time but a time of great joy and happiness which changed my life forever and gave me a strength which is as strong today as it ever was.
Being a committed Christian really is great, knowing that you are part of a worldwide Christian fellowship is a source of great peace and joy. Just saddens me that so many churches are as far from true Christianity as it is possible to be.
I’m disabled and virtually housebound but I really feel a spiritual boost when I share in Holy Communion. Because of this my local vicar visited me at home a couple of times to celebrate communion. Then two years ago the visits just stopped, no explanation, nothing and I’ve heard nothing since and the churche4s wonder why numbers are falling!!!

NEWS ABOUT MY FORTHCOMING BOOK

Yesterday I received the first proofs for my book which is always a very exciting milepost, seeing it in print for the first time.
Has come out to 255 pages and the publishers are making very complimentary commentd do am very happy about that. So look out for it ‘A LIFE OF SENTENCES’ by Dave J Hardwick

PRISONS TOLD TO FIND MORE SPACES

The BBC claims to have seen Justice Department documents ordering already crowded and overcrowded prisons to createmore spaces over the next two months. Apparently 40 prisons have been told to find another 440 places. Some of the prisons on the list are already overcrowded and amogst those listed are Lincoln and Leicester.

CHRIS GRAYLING AGAIN!!!

As Del boy would have said, what a plonker!!!
Why does Grayling not listen to any of the professionals, he just blunders forward with his crazy privatisation plans making more profits for ‘experienced’ companies like G4S and Serco. Probation has been destroyed and now he is building new super prisons which will no doubt be contracted out yet again to the private sector. What a mess he is creating for the next Labour Government, whether next ime round or the time after!
What is needed are not more crime factories but a government who will care about its people and work on the causes of crime not shut the stable door after the horses have bolted!!
Whilst Cameron and his crtonies become richer and richer the poor of this country are getting more and more desperate and more widespread. Do they care? No, they don’t, the government has gone with a few exceptions from being a group of dedicated people serving their constituents for genuine altruistic reasons to an upper class club whose sole intention is to feather their own nests!!
Wake up Britain, we can’t afford to sit back and let this happen.