Offenders: Employment

Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 11th June 2018.

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Photo of Kate Green Kate Green Labour, Stretford and Urmston

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many and what proportion of ex-offenders who (a) worked and (b) did not work in prison industries are in P45 employment one year after release from prison

Photo of Rory Stewart Rory Stewart The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice

We do not currently record the data as requested. We are working with HM Revenue and Customs to enable us to capture this information in the future.

A joint exercise was carried between MoJ, HMRC and DWP in 2013 to analyse the links between employment, benefits and reoffending (https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/304411/experimental-statistics.pdf). This found that only 17% of adults released from prison were in P45 employment at point of release. This analysis did not, however, establish whether or not the prisoners worked whilst in custody.

Reoffending is costing society approximately £15 billion a year. Effective rehabilitation needs prisoners to be willing to commit to change, take advice, learn new skills and take opportunities to work. For those individuals willing to engage, the prison system must deliver.

That is why we launched the Education and Employment strategy to create a system where each prisoner is set on a path to employment from the outset. We will empower governors to commission education provision that leads to work, we will engage and persuade employers to take on ex-prisoners via the New Futures Network (NFN) and we will consult on proposals to increase the opportunities available to prisoners to gain experience in real workplaces through Release on Temporary Licence (ROTL).

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