Chris Grayling Hands Probation Service Over To Bunch Of Crooks

a4e improvingBungling Secretary of State for Justice, Chris Grayling, has announced plans to hand over probation services to some of the shadiest companies operating in the UK.

Grayling is introducing a payment by results scheme for new probation contracts, similar to the one he helped launch on the Work Programme back when he was the bungling Employment Minister.  The Work Programme so far has been an unmitigated disaster as private sector poverty pimps have sat back and let the cash roll in from start fees, cherry picked the easiest to help and forced them into workfare, and largely abandoned everyone else.

Astonishingly it is likely to be many of the very same companies who have screwed up the Work Programme who will be let loose on probation services.  G4S, the company most famous for the death at their hands of Jimmy Mubenga, and the bodged Olympic Security fiasco, are certain to be on the list of those bidding for contracts.  A4e, the workfare company who have faced a string of fraud allegations, have also long been eying up probation services, presumably on the basis that they know a thing or two about crime themselves.

One of the key measures private companies are likely to be paid out on is whether they are able to stop people re-offending and ending up back inside.  This will mean that from the board levels down to the front line staff – who will no doubt be working to strict targets – it will be in the financial interests of the companies to cover up any further crimes probation workers may suspect have been committed.

Will a G4S worker really help the police with their inquiries, as grassing probation officers often do, if it means they won’t hit their targets that month?  G4S’ experience of getting away with crime could prove invaluable in keeping those ‘outcome’ payments flowing into their grubby pockets.

Experienced crooks like A4e and G4S giving people tips on how to stay out of jail for what will be trivial offences in many cases may turn out to be no bad thing.  But the potential for abuse is terrifying.  Grayling is said to favour the ‘black box’ approach to commissioning services.  This means all he cares about is the price, as under these kinds of contracts companies involved are given free reign to do whatever they choose to try and hit their targets.  Just like the Work Programme, these companies could be given unprecedented powers over people’s lives with barely any scrutiny.

According to The Guardian, the public sector will not be allowed to bid for the draconian new contracts which will cover 70% of the work carried out by probation services.  Social Workers should take note, this won’t end with probation staff.

It seems that Chris Grayling is intent on exporting the shambles he left   behind at the DWP into the Ministry of Justice.  Like some malevolent  jumped-up imp, he seems to think he’s being tough by prancing around scattering chaos wherever he treads.  In truth he’s far more Norman Wisdom – without the wit or talent- then he ever will be Norman Tebbit.

And when it all comes crashing down compulsive liar Grayling will no doubt slink off somewhere else in Government, turning his back on the shambles he’s created and claiming “it wasn’t me guv”.

Follow me on twitter @johnnyvoid

43 responses to “Chris Grayling Hands Probation Service Over To Bunch Of Crooks

  1. At this point that it should be obvious that all government policy revolves around employment being the sole method for dealing with any social issue … a clever bunch of rhetoric around one single policy, tailored to different departments … work cures all social ills … evidence of their ignornace is abundant IMO !

  2. so seek to “cure” or dominate…that is the question? free charles bronson, want insight into the prison system then read his story….

  3. Why is it always the same companies that are allowed to tender for these contracts,surely there are no private companies,with any relevant experience of dealing with the issues involved in probation?

  4. ‘payment by results’ – offenders who end up in court are ‘failed’ offenders, they didn’t get away with it. The most effective way to prevent recurrence of offending (ie to get the results and therefore the payment) would be to teach them how to be more effective in breaking the law, and getting away with it. Probation officers go into their careers with a very different aim. Originally it was to ‘advise, assist and befriend’ the offender, trying to help them find the opportunities for a good but crime free life within society. Of course, that was taken out of the job description by a tory government just as I finished training but it is still what many probation officers believe they are in the job for.

    Probation works to tackle the reasons why individuals (doesn’t work for mass programs – its a 1 -1 thing) offend, helping them to resolve problems in their lives and find new ways of living. Better to restore probation funding so that case loads on harassed and over-worked probation officers can be reduced than any crazy idea of giving the job to workfare providers on a payments by results scheme.

  5. From personal past experience I would say most security companies are corrupt in some shape or form. It is a grubby industry often littered with ex offenders and thugs with low morals.

  6. bullying people into being passive, does not help human development…but stifles it..crushes it…bullying people into a point of view is deeply undemocratic, so no surprises, with this latest “initiative”….same shit, different day….
    luckily the DSM, has been finally dumped by the NIMH….

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  8. Wait a minute, we’ve only recently had the chaos of Virgin going to court over the awarding of the contract for the West Coast Line.Surely refusing to accept bids on the basis that they come from a public body rather than a private company will breach competition legislation?

  9. Reblogged this on Vox Political and commented:
    Compulsive fact exaggerator Iain Duncan Smith wasn’t the only bad minister at the Department of Work and Pensions. Former colleague Chris Grayling has moved on to bigger and nastier cock-ups at Justice but – as this article shows – he has been determined to take some of his private sector friends with him. So we see A4e and G4S are likely to be bidding for new probation contracts.
    I find Johnny Void’s argument here terrifyingly persuasive, in the light of what we know about Grayling and his track record. What do YOU think?

  10. Pingback: Grayling Hands #Probation Service Over To Bunch Of Crooks #Criminal #Privatisation | johndwmacdonald

  11. Probation officers under this system will either help criminals commit more crime without being caught; or if they’re like ATOS will tell lies about people they dislike to send them back to prison. Or both.

  12. Don’t mean to sound like a conspiracy theorist but it sound like our country is being destroyed from within, systemic pedophilia, gap between rich and poor, elite politicians riding the gravy train and very possibly the young people of this country, then come the attack on the most vulnerable(disabled/mental health), liverpool care pathway, just what the fuck is going on???

    • You have summarized it perfectly, Andy. That is the plan. However, not just Britain – the whole world.

    • Landless Peasant

      WTF is going on? Good question; War is Peace, Chaos is Order, Black is White. I feel like I’ve slipped into an alternate Universe, where Hitler won. Thatcher’s children have come of age, and now we’re fucked. A Cabinet of filthy rich Hooray-Henry Aristocrats and psychopathic/sociopathic Right-wing social-climbers, all born bare-faced liars and completely amoral. Or could there be another explanation, some method to their madness, not content to cling to their wealth and corner every market they can create, they seem to want to drive the poor out of the cities, out of civil life, and deliberately make it ever more difficult in every way for any of us to survive or exist in society. Our ancestors were moved off the Common Land throughout the Middle-Ages, the feudal workforce was created, later displaced by the Agricultural Revolution to form the Working Class of the Industrial Revolution, the reason many of us now find ourselves living in crowded towns & cities, the Industrial Revolution now over, and no industry, plus an ever-growing population and shortage of housing. This is Phase III. Scrap planning laws, health & safety, human rights, drive people out of their homes and make it impossible for them to live, and we either die or live in home-made shelters in the hills. And all this because they will do ANYTHING but re-distribute the wealth.

      • Now I know how the foxes feel, when they are being chased by a pack of bloodthirsty Toffs on horseback and their hounds.

      • lp agenda 21,master plan ties this all together…see rosa korie, info a real eye opener!

        • Please, at the very least, read this thread about Agenda 21, and how this conspiracy theory (which is nonsense) is being used by the Tea Party and other sections of the right:

          • jv, thanks for drawing that article to my attention.
            i hope, rosa korie is wrong, about agenda 21..and it’s sinister use…as it is now built into every structure plan in the uk.. google..”local structure plan and agenda 21 action”…i have been an advocate of a21…since 1995…but i have become, cynical about it’s implementation…as i read the document in 1995, it pointed to greater democracy with its 1st principle, “that human beings are at the centre of concerns for developments and have a right to a healthy and productive lifestyle in harmony with nature…”, it does no harm to look..

            • thing is that things like agenda 21 become shorthand in funding bids, development plans etc that means look we’re pretending to care about the environment, same as these things will talk about a commitment to “equal opportunities” as easy jargon to say look we’re not racist/sexist in who we employ. Agenda 21 provided a framework and for a while things some environmental funding strands would say they encourage projects in line with agenda 21, because they’re too lazy to say we want projects which are carbon neutral, sustainable, recycle etc and have to explain what all that stuff means. So what is basically just a voluntary UN treaty on the environment gets used by every shark developer, or in fairness, genuinely environmentally concerned council worker or town planner, as evidence that they care about the environment. the reason the tea party use it is that they see the ideals of agenda 21 and environmentalism in general as socialist and therefore something to be wiped out, and a lot of that lot still do really believe there is a secret marxist conspiracy, of which I and presumably you are both members.

            • jv
              i am against the crushing of human capitalist and corporate bullies…that to be, one must first pay homage to the company,or school or what ever…”we know whats best for you”…jargon….poisons wrapped in sugar coating…trails with smiles etc…my passion is in perma-culture eco-village design and self build….or moving towards such..a long way off now it seems…i’ve given up hope of such things…but my mind still yearns for the progress, that will one day make this a reality…!
              i remember bands like, levellers culture shock, rdf…and the like, punks all the pre rave stuff….buff…pubrock…and the bastards stopped my fun…with the cja..!
              they stopped the free festivals, stonehenge, even glastonbury was free to us types….to make one pay money to promoters,,blah blah …the boring bastards…jealous, coz they are afraid to be human being…now it is banned unless, it turns a profit…
              if it is free, then it is anarchy…if it is not, it is capitalist..seems to me to be the key distinction…

            • Alex "Goldfinger" Jones

              Agenda 21 is a sinister Commie-led New World Order plot to kill off 99.99% of the world’s population!

              Police State 10 : Total Global Enslavement – own it now on high-quality DVD!!

    • We just make the place look untidy ….

  13. Landless Peasant

    They want to make it like America, where Prison is BIG business. Slavery never ended.

  14. get a prison sentence go to a G4S jail, G4s profit, come out and get a G4s probation officer, don’t re-offend G4s profit, re-offend back to G4s prison, G4s profit. Conflict of interest? Empty seat round G4s directors table need filling at some point, will it have Grayling’s name on it?

  15. And now Stewart Jackson Mp Peterborough is being unjustly persecuted re £54k. If he asks Capita nicely he and his descendants can pay it off @ £25 per mth for 180 yrs ! So I Wiki the guy,he worked for now defunct “Business Link”. So I Wiki the above and up pops the name Serco…….. Sorry I forgot to mention he’s a tory mp?

  16. What is it they say “violence breeds violence”, so if these private providers are brutal to their charges, there is little chance of rehabilitation from the offender.
    Ex prisoners like the rest of the unemployed on leaving prison are offered little in the way of employment unless it is on some exploitative work programme.
    I wonder if these lying politicians are commissioning more runways at Heathrow so that they can make a quick getaway?

  17. Teesside Solidarity Movement

    Reblogged this on Teesside Solidarity Movement.

  18. Off topic, but this couldn’t happen to a “nicer” bank, fuckers closed my current account when I went 11p over, Add to that,rude unhelpful counter staff so stuff them, & if they collapse they won’t be missed. Ethical banking my arse. –

    • Landless Peasant

      Well that’s odd because I use them and they have been ok with me. I went slightly over-drawn a couple of times by a minor amount, but do not have an over-draft on my account, but they didn’t charge me or close it.

  19. My bank charges if you have not got enough money in your account for a standing order request even though they do not pay the standing order for you. I remember something cropped up and i’d dipped into my monthly water payment which was due – the bank did not pay as i have no overdraft facility but they charged me £9 just for refusing the waterboard payment – work that out, a licence to print money.

    • I’ve got a basic bank account, which is all I can get, which means cash card only, no switch etc but I can set up direct debits. Ive managed to fuck up my mobiles bill twice this year and its bounced, they didnt charge but said if it happens again they will close my account. wondered if anyone else had come across this, could cause big problems when UC is launched if the banks wont play ball and people lose bank accounts because they didnt have enough to pay a bill.

  20. And talking of Banks specifically Co op. Trolled by markets/moodies and chief exec resignation. Osborne on R5 sport proudly announces no more ‘public’ money to bail out failing banks. Go figure ! Like JV i tend to be sceptical about conspiracy theories…..

  21. JV sorry to hear about your banking issues too, my bank has never threatened to close my account but the fact that they charged me £9 on my one and only current account for my one and only time not having the full amount in the bank to pay one of my direct debits I thought was extortionate. I could understand if they had paid the difference for me but not for refusing the waterboard, I can’t recall whether the water company charged me also for late payment.

  22. PS when I stated standing order I meant direct debit.

    • I try to have as few Direct Debits as possible, preferring to set up Standing Orders which are much more controllable. I can change the payment date online, which is sometimes very useful If I know I’m going to be short of money for a particular payment on a particular date I can change it to a date when I know I will have sufficient balance to cover it.

      I, like many thousands of others have had no end of troubles with Direct Debits. Many DD payments seem to go out early, and this has been the cause of many charges on my account. In 2007 I actually put in a claim in the County Court as part of the campaign that was then in existence to reclaim these fees, which at one point stood at £35 a throw. However I put my claim in at about the same time as a freeze was put on cases as the Financial Ombudsman launched an investigation. Even though the initial finding was in favour of claimants, (and the banks weren’t given leave to appeal) it went as far as the Supreme Court, (one of it’s first cases) which overturned the original decision. I’m sure the banks heaved a collective huge sigh of relief as it would have cost them an estimated £4.7 bn or so to satisfy all the claims. But as we know, by that time the banks were so cash strapped they needed bailing out with the taxes we pay.

      The £2,700 I had a claim in for would have been very useful, and I still feel pretty annoyed that the campaign failed, but at least bank charges for failed Direct Debits was reduced, and the charge is now £10 a go. It’s still a lot more than it should be in my opinion, as the charge should really be no more than the amount required to cover the bank’s extra costs that have arisen as a result of there not being sufficient money in our accounts – and though, (as far as I am aware) no bank has ever divulged what the real cost of a failed Direct Debit is, (probably a very small amount as it’s all automated, the biggest cost would be the paper and postage of the letter telling us about the failed payment) I would suspect that a pound would cover it, and still make the bank a profit.

      About the only thing I have on DD now is my phone/broadband line, and I’m always careful to make sure that there is enough money to pay that, as if that fails not only do the bank fine me £10 for the failed payment, the phone company also fine me £10 for a late payment. I’ve used the word ‘fine’ as basically I’d argue that this is what the charge amounts to, as it’s a lot more than the failure costs either organisation. It’s iniquitous, but where else do we go?

      The situation wouldn’t be so bad if we were free to pay in the old fashioned way in cash, but many providers now want to charge for a paper bill, and also add a ‘non-direct debit charge’ because we want to pay in good, old fashioned cash. This was made illegal in the Republic of Ireland soon after it started to become standard practice, but companies are still allowed to get away with making such charges in the UK. ~~~~~

      It may be that if you are in work and earning enough to cover your Direct Debits, (and, more likely, having access to an agreed overdraft facility) that late payments are never an issue, but when your income amounts to only 13% of average incomes, these charges become a real issue. It’s not so bad now, but I do remember times when I was getting two or three such charges on my account in a month, and that did cause real hardship, often with a significant knock-on effect in that having to pay the bank charges in one month would lead to shortage of cash in the account and thus lead to another bank charge the following month.

      So far my bank has made no threats to close my account if I get into difficulties, (and my thoughts are with those who do face that very real prospect) but that could change. The prospect of this happening to people once UC comes in is dreadful to consider.

  23. Pingback: Save UK justice: the blogs | ilegality

  24. something survived...

    If people in jail are innocent though, not even guilty!…..

  25. Pingback: Fault-lines | Gabriel Vents

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