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offenders and ex-prisoners and the actual implementation of measures designed to deliver the policy reforms

  • Too many women still come out of prison homeless and with little prospect of getting

a home or a job in the near future

Immediate barriers to the implementation of new innovative and more effective implementation of policies for the reintegration/resettlement of women lawbreakers are several:

Public, political and media ambivalence about ex-prisoners’ place in society Insufficient funding No holistic and co-ordinated strategy, resulting in: fragmentation of responses to

w o m e n e x - p r i s o n e r s n e e d s ; i n a p p r o p r i a t e e x p e c t a t i o n s o f o f f i c i a l s ; K a f k a e s q u bureaucracy Lack of popular and political understanding of the relationships between resettlement and crime reduction Prison overcrowding e

Contextual Causes of Failures to Implement Effective Measures for Resettlement of Women ex-prisoners


  • Misplaced emphasis in policy statements on women’s criminogenic need rather than on women’s material needs

  • Inappropriate rigour of community penalties which set women up to fail

  • Managerialism and inappropriate evaluations undermining efficient delivery of policies

  • The processes of imprisonment are logically inimical to those of reintegration

  • The processes of imprisonment are operationally inimical to those of reintegration

  • The processes of imprisonment are empirically inimical to those of reintegration

Fundamental Issues Affecting Resettlement of Women Prisoners There remain two fundamental barriers to the resettlement of women prisoners: the decline of the welfare state in the UK; and complex issues relating to conceptions of risk and responsibility in relation to the employment of people with criminal convictions. These issues, beyond the scope of this particular research, would certainly require to be taken into consideration in future policy developments and would benefit from further elaboration in future empirical investigations into public attitudes to employing ex- prisoners, or indeed anyone with a criminal conviction.

The Research In recent years there has been a plethora of official inquiries into women’s imprisonment and issues of reintegration/resettlement of both male and female released prisoners. As a result, the English Research Team had use of a wide range of already published data . The following Report therefore draws primarily upon already published work when writing about ex-prisoners, using the 32 interviews conducted with 27 prisoners and ex- prisoners specifically for this research primarily to illustrate more general points made in published statistical data. In particular, we draw upon the tape recorded interviews of two women, Kim and Muriel, who were asked to give their life stories because they illustrate


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