THROUGHCARE INITIATIVES: BRIDGING THE GAP
BETWEEN PRISON AND THE COMMUNITY
Prescribing service (Shropshire)
1. Prisoners who become drug free whilst
in custody can access a prescribing service four-five days before
release. Prescriptions of Naltrexexone are given for a 7-14 day
period during which time the ex-prisoner is seen by a community
criminal justice worker and offered support and a further prescription.
The service is available for three months and is provided to 40
to 50 ex-prisoners at any one time.
2. "Stepping Out" is a community
based initiative for offenders on release; it organises community
care assessments and co-ordinates community support packages.
The initiative runs in five London Boroughs Wandsworth,
Kingston, Richmond, Merton and Sutton. It has been agreed that
all CARAT community service referrals for these Boroughs will
be processed by these projects allowing for a one point-of-service
3. A resettlement worker is employed via
a local drug agency (Exeter Drug Project). The project is for
people coming out of prison who have resided in the local area
before sentencing and wish to return to those areas upon release;
who wish to address a substance misuse issue; and are released
after less than 12 months in custody. Priority is given to short
term offenders, young offenders, women and stimulant users.
4. Leicestershire DAT provides three through-care
workers and part funds an accommodation and an employment/training
worker. The worker is based in the community and visits four prisons
in Leicestershire to provide links with CARAT teams and offer
intensive short-term support post release.
5. The Prison Service is leading an innovative
pilot scheme to set-up post-release hostels for short-term prisoners
with histories of drug misuse and accommodation problems. The
hostels will provide intensive support through the crucial period
after release crucial in terms of relapse, overdose and
return to crime to increase the chances of their staying
off drugs long-term, and therefore achieve a significant impact
on re-offending rates.
6. There will be up to five hostels in the
pilot, one for women and four for men. The male hostels are planned
for Exeter, Bristol, Merseyside and Preston; the female hostel
will be in the Bristol area. It is planned that the hostels will
open in the autumn 2002, subject to securing planning consents
on suitable buildings. It is anticipated that Ministers will make
a decision on the preferred providers of the hostels soon. At
that stage the project will pass to the National Probation Directorate.