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Lancashire police and crime commissioner's probation service warning
11:41am Friday 1st November 2013 in News
LANCASHIRE’S police and crime commissioner has added his voice to growing unease at plans to privatise the county’s probation service.
Clive Grunshaw fears that dismantling long-established structures for dealing with offenders, so private firms can cash in, is not the way forward.
And along with 12 other Labour police commissioners he has signed an open letter to Justice Secretary Chris Grayling, claiming it will lead to a fragmented and disjointed service.
The concerns have emerged as Lancashire Probation Service celebrates confirmation as a high-performing trust in a national survey.
Eighty-nine per cent of those surveyed as part of a offender management questionnaire said they had a ‘positive experience’ of their dealings with county probation officers - the highest rating in the UK.
But Mr Grunsaw is worried this trend will be disrupted if large chunks of the service is ‘outsourced’ to shareholder-led companies, including a new ‘payment-by-results’ system.
He said: “I do not believe that long-term solution will be achieved through the fracturing of probation services delivered across Lancashire, a proposal I believe will create confusion and uncertainty.”
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