Criminology, probation and stuff

Some musings on criminology with a focus on probation

Interview with Phil Wheatley in the Guardian

with 2 comments

Interview with Phil Wheatley in the Guardian: Striking a balance between punishment and compassion | Society | The Guardian.

Some interesting bits (with my superbly well informed comments in bold!):

he unfailingly strives to emphasise the importance of a humane and decent approach towards his organisation’s “service users”- service users?! what happened to offenders?!

He points out that he has already cut jobs at headquarters – “because there are more of us there than are adding value” – i don’t think people in probation know about this- it might endear them to him if they did.

But he maintains that “none of this affects prisoners or those on probation”- why would a load of pen pushers in London affect the frontline?

He has also maximised his purchasing power by stopping individual prisons having their own contracts with suppliers, instead negotiating supplies as one big organisation. He says: “Supermarkets often give their supplier a hard time, but give their customers reduced prices. In a way, I’m trying to do the same.”- which has resulted in stories in the press of plumbers travelling 200 miles to fix a toilet seat etc- it might be cheap but it doesn’t seem very efficient or speedy.

But surely one major problem is that we put too many people in prison? “That’s an area I avoid commenting on,” Wheatley says. “I’m a jailer.- wimp! let’s hope he speaks out after his retirement- surely jailers have opinions too!


Written by criminologyandstuff

February 24, 2010 at 2:01 am

Posted in criminal justice

2 Responses

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  1. Other than lounging around in an ivory tower (an entirely honourable option, I should add), isn’t being one of those London pen-pushers about the only thing that your PhD research would qualify you to do?


    February 24, 2010 at 4:33 pm

    • maybe, which is why I plan on staying in the ivory tower!


      February 24, 2010 at 4:45 pm

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