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Further to his speech in the House of Commons last week on the future of the probation service (which you can watch here), Chesterfield MP sent the following message to Chesterfield’s probation officers who are out on strike today.

Chesterfield probation officers on strike outside of the local magistrates court

Chesterfield probation officers on strike outside of the local magistrates court

“It is a hugely regrettable that dedicated Probation workers who daily face difficult life and death decisions and who have the supreme respect of all those who understand the job they do, have felt they had to take the extremely rare step of going on strike to demonstrate the potentially appalling consequences of the government’s rushed and ill judged proposals to privatise Probation, abolish Derbyshire Probation Trust and move this vital work from high performing probation professionals to the same companies that have enjoyed such a lamentable track record in other areas of service provision.

I have spoken in parliament and on the Sunday Politics show of how my concerns mirror those expressed by officers of NAPO and will continue to offer my support to Probation officers and those who wish to challenge the government on these reforms.

It is a matter of shame that the government is making these changes having cancelled the pilot that may have demonstrated flaws in the plans and without allowing any parliamentary scrutiny of the proposals; through misuse of the existing Rehabilitation of Offenders legislation. This demonstrates to me a lack of confidence of the government in their ability to withstand scrutiny of their plans and a recognition that they are being pursued for ideological reasons and without a thorough examination of the likelihood of their success. I support an increase in probation provision to those serving sentences of less than 12 months, but it has not been explained why the abolition of successful Probation trusts is necessary in order to achieve that.”

One Response to “”

  1. Fran Street says:

    Whatever is the point of privatising the Probation Service?
    This Government knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.
    Except that the posh boys don’t even know the price of a pint of milk.
    One would think that in the light of the failures of G4S, A4E, ATOS and the sad state of the 111 service that this government of over privileged, allegedly well educated (mainly) men would have learnt some lessons.
    Leave the Probation Service to the experts.
    Fran
    Chesterfield

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I am Toby Perkins, Labour's Member of Parliament for Chesterfield. If you would like to get in touch with me, my office is open and can be reached by phone on 01246 386 286. I also hold regular surgeries in Chesterfield and Staveley so that constituents can meet me and I can take up their concerns. If you would like to make an appointment then please do contact my office. Thank you for visiting.

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