To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what steps he is taking to improve the provision of probation services in rural locations in Wales.
9 September 2019
The Government set out its response to the consultation ‘Strengthening probation, building confidence’ on 16th May 2019.
This consultation response confirmed that we intend to bring the supervision of medium and low risk offenders, currently supervised by the Community Rehabilitation Company, into the National Probation Service across England and Wales. Recognising the unique circumstances of Wales, we are seeking to achieve this by the end of 2019 so that advice to court, risk and need assessments, sentence planning and managing enforcement and recall will all sit within a single organisation.
A number of market engagement events have been held in Wales to help inform the design of the future services and we are keen to work with a range of providers including both the private and voluntary sector. HMPPS in Wales work closely with the Welsh Government, the PCCs and other key stakeholders in Wales to ensure we capture how our services can best meet our shared objectives and align with existing arrangements. We are taking into account the landscape in Wales, including consideration of Welsh legislation, Welsh language and other priorities identified in our design work to date. In doing this, we will seek to reduce duplication in existing services and encourage partners to design, develop, commission and deliver in an integrated way.
NPS in Wales covers the whole of Wales, which has a mix of urban and rural areas creating different challenges and opportunities. There are five geographical local delivery units that are configured in a way to ensure that there is local oversight of issues such as rurality and an ability to respond to local challenges that may arise.