Non-custodial community programmes for non-violent female criminals in the UK

This is the fifth in a series of blogs from the finalists of this year’s Policy Idol competition. These blogs were originally presented as policy pitches at the live final of the competition earlier this year. Policy Idol is an annual competition open to all staff and students at King’s.

By Sarah Williams and Emma Wynne-Bannister

In the UK, approximately 9,000 women are imprisoned each year for non-violent crimes such as shoplifting, parking fines and non-payment of a TV licence. This includes around 5,000 women who are remanded in custody before being given a non-custodial sentence. A typical confinement is six months or less, a paradoxical situation in which these women are imprisoned just long enough for benefits to cease, but insufficient time to secure alternatives (the rate of official homelessness on discharge from prison sits at almost 40 per cent). As a result, many of these women get caught in a cycle of re-offending and re-imprisonment – a cycle that is costing the UK economy approximately £200 million each year. Continue reading

How racial biases can influence outcomes in the criminal justice system

By Rachel Hesketh

Last week David Lammy MP published his independent review into the treatment of, and outcomes for, Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) individuals in the criminal justice system (CJS). His findings on the extent of disproportionality in the CJS are sobering: England and Wales would have 9,000 fewer prisoners (the equivalent of 12 average-sized prisons) if the prison population was representative of the ethnic composition of the two countries. The overrepresentation of Black people in prisons here is actually greater than in the US. Continue reading

Looking at NIHR’s research through the lens of impact

This post originally appeared on the NIHR website.

By Adam Kamenetzky

As people gather for the 2017 Health and Care Innovation Expo, Adam Kamenetzky reflects on how the ‘impact agenda’ provides a sophisticated opportunity to understand how research benefits society.

I’m not going to lie… As part of the team that pulled together 100 stories highlighting NIHR’s achievements for its 10th anniversary last year, I had a few late nights. Colleagues and I pored over content both lay and scientific, written up for websites, policy briefings, reports, pamphlets, and (of course) journals. We synthesised, evidenced, cross-referenced, edited, tagged and indexed examples from a pool of over 200 suggestions; crowd-sourced from NIHR communication professionals, senior managers, and researchers and healthcare practitioners themselves. Sleep notwithstanding, we ended up with both bite-sized and full-length versions of what we called an ‘impact synthesis’ – a centuplicate compendium of benefits delivered through NIHR’s support of health and care research. Continue reading

Revitalising democracy by engaging the youth

This is the fourth in a series of blogs from the finalists of this year’s Policy Idol competition. These blogs were originally presented as policy pitches at the live final of the competition earlier this year. Policy Idol is an annual competition open to all staff and students at King’s.

By Imran Hyder

Young people’s low civic knowledge and understanding, and their lack of engagement with public issues, are well-detailed problems that plague many Western democracies. Up until the turnaround at the Brexit referendum and the 2017 general election, youth turnout for elections in the UK had been in decline since 1992, from around 66 per cent in the general elections preceding that date, to only 43 per cent of 18–24-year-olds turning out to vote in the 2015 general election. Youth turnout for the preceding 2014 EU parliamentary elections was an appalling 28 per cent. Two years later, around 60 per cent of registered young voters in the UK went to the polls for the Brexit referendum, and a similar percentage of 64 per cent has voted in the 2017 general election. So what was behind the decline and the recent apparent reversal, and how do we move forward? Continue reading