Ministers faced some serious questions from MPs this week about the justice system.
The conditions of prisons, court closures and skyrocketing violence in the youth estate were all under the microscope. As too was probation.
Daniel Zeichner MP asked if “the money that should have been available to prisons will be moved to the probation service” since the government intends to shift the burden from prisons to probation. Justice Secretary Alex Chalk said he’s talking to officers “about how we can ensure that their workload is manageable”.
Shadow prisons and probation minister Ruth Cadbury highlighted how recent recruitment “has actually resulted in 76 fewer probation officers between March last year and March this year” and that “due to the excessive workload, staff are leaving in their droves”.
Andy Carter issued a warning about the “lack of trained probation officers to carry out pre-sentence stand-down reports”, to which the justice secretary insisted: “We are working closely with the probation service to ensure that that resource is properly allocated” .
Watch in full: https://parliamentlive.tv/event/index/49aa680e-cf23-4282-b1a0-4932b7094620?in=11:33:48 (from 11:33:48)