Kerry McCarthy Labour MP for Bristol East
Yesterday at Justice Questions I asked what the Government is doing to reduce workloads in the probation service. A Channel 4 News report recently found that 8 out of 12 probation regions in England and Wales had caseloads exceeding 110% – an ‘excessive workload’ by the MoJ’s own standards.
Probation Officers say they’re overworked, underpaid and staff absences are rife. It’s good to hear from the Minister about efforts to recruit more staff, and I hope this will mean that those already working in the service aren’t forced to adopt workloads that leave them sick with stress.
January’s inspectorate report into Zara Aleena’s murder found preventable mistakes in the Probation Service, linked to overwork, that led to the release of her killer, Jordan McSweeney. Labour will ensure police and probation services have the resources to fight crimewaves on our streets that undermine public safety and security, and to reduce reoffending. I’ll be keeping up this pressure on the MoJ to ensure it keeps its promises.
Watch clip here.