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2020年第2期新版跑狗图

2020-02-19 08:24:07 官方地址:http://pm2517.com 浏览次数 694429
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St Giles Trust: Could mentors meeting exReleased convicts will be met at prison gates by “mentors” to help them avoid returning to a life of crime as part of the government’s planned ‘rehabilitation revolution’. Announcing the reforms, Justice Secretary Chris Grayling said the mentors, who will include reformed offenders, or “old lags”, will help prison-leavers with issues such as housing, getting a job and tackling drug and alcohol problems. Here Rob Owen, chief executive of charity St Giles Trust, which works with ex-offenders, welcomes the move but says it needs proper financial backing... I remember going for my interview for the job of chief at St Giles Trust. Two very cheery lads who worked on the reception caught my attention. A drop–in service was under way and the atmosphere was similar to AE on a Friday night, with clients confused, crying and volatile. But the situation was being capably and calmly h

andled by these two men who

didn’t seem fazed by anything. I later learned these chaps were volunteering at St Giles on day release from a local open prison and that many of the energetic, dedicated staff I met were also either still serving or had served time. The desperate people they were helping were often on their first day out of prison and facing hom

elessness and destitution. Leaving prison should be about a fresh start but for many people the reality is very different. In my five years at St Giles T

rust I’ve never met anyone who didn’t leave prison with good intentions. But it is incredibly hard to stay straight when you don’t have a roof over your head or any money in your pocket. Not to mention the temptations from f

ormer associates to revert back to old ways. But it is possible to change

and over 40% of my staff at St Giles Trust are living proof of this. We are a leading employer of ex-offenders and train former prisoners to become professional caseworkers who offer practical support and mentoring to other people looking t

urn their lives around. These guys, who are carefully selected and vetted, meet prisoners from the moment they are released and stick with them 2020年第2期新版跑狗图 on this tricky first day out. Leaving prison is a bit like an obstacle course and our guys help their clients through it. Getting ID is a big issue for many prison leavers as without it they can’t get housed or jobseekers allowance. We help them overcome these early hurdles so they have the best chance of sticking with our longer-term services which help them find jobs and training. Any former prisoner will tell you that the best person to help them is someone who has been in the same boat. Many of the people in UK prisons are among the

most marginalised and disadvantaged people in society. More than 25% grew up in care, 33% were homeless when they went into prison and a further

33% lose their homes while serving. And around 45% lose contact with their families during their sentence. The figures alone give us an indication of what a massive challenge it must seem to get your life on track if those around you don’t seem to have an idea

of what life is like for you. So imagine what it must feel like to be helped by someone who has moved a

way from what seems like an impossible trap. As well as providing welcome support and guidance, they become positive role models for our clients. When our staff ask them what they want to do with their future, the rep

ly is often, ‘Just what you are doing now’. In short, they want to give something back. There is the old saying, ‘It takes a thief to catch a thief’. Getting ex-offenders to help others means you are using some of the most street-savvy people who can immediat

ely spot the danger signs. They know when their clients are about to relapse on drugs or giving off signals they are about to commit crime. My long-standing caseworker Wendy who supports some of the most needy, chaotic and vulnerable women leaving prison says: “They can’t pull the wool over my eyes and they know this. I know when someone has used drugs because I’ve been there and done it myself”. Much of what has been announced in yesterday’s speech by Chris Grayling gets a big thumbs up from us. We have been meeting prison leavers at the gate since 2006 and using former offenders to do this. We know it works and external evaluations into our services have proved this. One analysis showed aid provided by one of our services reduced re-offending by an additional 40% and delivered 10 in criminal justice savings to the t

axpayer for every 1 invested in us. Imagine if this work was rolled out nationally. That would deliver massive savings to the public purse. So it is with some frustration that St Giles Trust is still scrabbling around for funding to continue large areas of its work. As I write this, two

services we run which use ex-offenders to offer services and support to others are under threat. Our WIRE project which supports vulnerable female prison leavers could end next March. A long-standing service we run across the counties of Norfolk and Suffolk training ex-offenders in the community to offer mentoring and support to others is facing closure. The work we do needs solid funding behind it. It is vital to provide a high quality, professional service when working with ex-offenders and this means proper training and management of the staff. But the benefits are huge and long- term, not just a sticking plaster. Prevention is better and cheaper than cure. Aside from the financial savings are the very human ones in terms of tens of thousands fewer future victims and safer communities. We all benefit from this. In our experience, seeing ex-offenders as a solution rather than a problem is the way forward.  We are pleased Chris Grayling feels the same and sincerely hope this bold approach is followed through with the decisions and resources to back it. The St Giles Trust helps equip ex-offenders for life after prison. www.stgilestrust.org.uk

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