Scottish executive defies plan’s critics

Social services groups in Scotland have hit out at Scottish
executive plans to push ahead with a single agency incorporating
the prison service and criminal justice social work despite
overwhelming opposition from professional bodies.

While nearly 95 per cent of respondents to a consultation carried
out by the executive failed to back the idea, minister for justice
Cathie Jamieson said she remains convinced a service for offender
management which has a single, integrated structure is required.

She added that it would speed up the processing of offenders,
reduce reoffending, improve prison intervention and allow for
proper supervision upon release.

Steven Fitzpatrick, criminal justice spokesperson for Cosla, said:
“By forcing through a single agency, ministers would be choosing to
ignore the collective views of those with greatest insight into how
offending can be reduced.”

The legislation is planned to be tabled in parliament next

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