Select Committee on Home Affairs Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence

Annex C



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 contact.

  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.

Post-release hostels

  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.

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