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The Future of Prisons?

12th November 2020 20:00 - 21:30
Panel debate

About this event

There is wide agreement that the system of imprisonment is expensive and ineffective. Those who go into prison are overwhelmingly raised in disadvantage; most lack the skills needed to succeed after their imprisonment. In prison, on current figures, each week there will be almost 600 incidents of self-harm; at least one suicide; and 350 assaults, including 90 on staff. A staggering three quarters (75%) of ex-inmates reoffend within nine years of release, and more than a third (39.3%) within the first twelve months (a figure that rises to 60% for those on short sentences). The total cost is estimated at £13 billion each year. Although these problems are recognised by politicians and academics alike – and have been for some time – there is surprisingly little agreement on what to do. Punishment and prisons seem to exercise a hold on our collective imaginations such that we cannot conceive of a society where they take different forms, and maybe even radically different forms. This panel debate will bring together an international group of academics, criminal justice practitioners, and an ex-offender to discuss how to reform punishment and prisons.

Welcome to the 2020 Festival of Social Science

This website is an archived version of the 2020 festival, visit the main website for this years events