Female Offender Strategy: One Year On — [Joan Ryan in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 2:51 pm on 24th July 2019.

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Photo of Phillip Lee Phillip Lee Conservative, Bracknell 2:51 pm, 24th July 2019

Okay. Forgive me; I was not aware of that fact. My point is that a hell of a lot of thought went into the strategy, most of which made it to publication.

If we could make progress in this space with women—reducing the prison population by half by 2030 was my internal private target—and if we could make a success of it, we could move into the male estate and apply exactly the same approach and principles and reduce our prison population across the board. That requires some thought on sentencing, tagging and various other punitive in-the-community options. It is difficult because of an uptick in violent and sexual crimes among men and women in recent years, which we obviously must address, but if we were to do this, we would get to a situation where our prison system, for men, women and young people, would be functioning, and doing what it should be doing—rehabilitating. Then we would get to a society with reduced crime and, more broadly, a society that we could all be proud of.