04 December 2002
A private and possibly unique consultation today involved a Government Minister, the Church of England Board for Social Responsibility, the Prison Reform Trust and contributors to a new book of essays, The Future of Criminal Justice.
This consultation took place on the day the Criminal Justice Bill enters the House of Commons for debate. It provided a forum for discussion of the need to:
reserve prison as an important place of last resort for serious and violent offenders
enable offenders to serve their sentence in a community with opportunities to pay back for the harm they have caused
build a safer society.
The Minister for Criminal Justice System - the Lord Falconer of Thoroton QC
The Director General of the Prison Service, Martin Narey
The Director of the National Probation Service, Eithne Wallace
The Chief Inspectors of Prisons and Probation Anne Owers and Professor Rod Morgan
many of the contributors to the book.
The new Archbishop of Canterbury, The Most Revd and Rt. Hon Dr Rowan Williams, chaired the consultation, which also included prison chaplains and others active in prison reform and the care of offenders inside prison and after release.
The Archbishop of Canterbury said: "The issues raised in these essays and highlighted at this consultation are fundamental to the health and cohesion of a just society. I believe Christianity and the Church can offer important insights and perspectives-born in part out of the work of prison chaplains-in relation to many of these challenges. I am delighted to have had this early opportunity as Archbishop of Canterbury to engage with some of those most closely involved in these issues."
The role of religion, the faith communities and voluntary organisations was also explored. Faith communities and voluntary organisations are already involved in serving both prisoners and the prison system through the agency of prison Chaplaincy and through the role of the community in the rehabilitation of offenders. Their wider role in the regeneration of communities was also recognised.
The editors of the book, the Revd Dr Peter Sedgwick of the Church of England Board for Social Responsibility and Revd Dr Christopher Jones, Chaplain and Fellow of St Peter's College Oxford, also joined the consultation. A full list of participants is attached.
Further information from:
Steve Jenkins or Arun Kataria tel (020) 7898-1326
Juliet Lyon, Director, Prison Reform Trust tel 020 7251 5070, 07762 093 105
Note to Editors
At noon in Church House Westminster today Lord Hurd of Westwell chaired the launch of a book of essays, The Future of Criminal Justice. This collection of wide ranging and powerful essays brings together policy makers at the highest level, campaigners for prison reform, prison chaplains and those working in prison charities. The book published by SPCK is dedicated to the retired Bishop to Prisons, The Rt Revd Bob Hardy.
SPCK - 020 7643 0382
List of attendees:
The Future of Criminal Justice
Delegates at Consultation on 4th December
Rabbi Michael Binstock Office of the Chief Rabbi/Prison Chaplain
Bishop Terry Brain Bishop of Salford and (Roman Catholic) Bishop to Prisons
Dr Isobel Burch Cumbria
Mrs Sue Burridge Church of England Board for Social Responsibility
Judy Clements Prison Service Director, Diversity and Equality Group
Stuart Dew Churches' Criminal Justice Forum
Geoff Dobson Deputy Director, Prison Reform Trust
Canon Alan Duce Chaplain, H.M.P. Lincoln
Lord Falconer Minister of State for Criminal Justice
David Faulkner Chair, Howard League
Julia Flack Probation Service
Myra Fulford Director, Prison Advice and Care Trust
John Harding Parole Board. Retired Chief Probation Officer ILPS
Bishop Bob Hardy Bishop of Lincoln Retired Bishop to Prisons
Simon Hughes MP Liberal Democrat Party Chief Spokesman, Home Affairs
Lord Hurd of Westwell President of Prison Reform Trust, former Home Secretary
Revd Christopher Jones Chaplain, St Peter's College, Oxford
Mrs Brenda Large The Magistrate's Association representative
Juliet Lyon Director, Prison Reform Trust (PRT)
Clive Martin Director, CLINKS
Professor Rod Morgan HM Chief Inspector of Probation
Martin Narey Director General, Prison Service
Ven. William Noblett Chaplain - General Prison Service
Anne Owers HM Chief Inspector of Prisons
Sir David Ramsbotham Retired HM Chief Inspector of Prisons
Lucie Russell Prison Reform Trust
Revd Dr Peter Sedgwick Church of England Board for Social Responsibility, (BSR)
Bishop Peter Selby Bishop of Worcester and (Anglican) Bishop to Prisons
David Skidmore Director, Church of England Board for Social Responsibility
Dr Khalid Sofi Muslim Council of Great Britain
Eithne Wallace Director, National Probation Service
Lord Warner Chair, Youth Justice Board
Most Revd Rowan Williams Archbishop of Canterbury