Con­vict men­tor­ing hailed as a suc­cess

Midweek Visiter - - News -

CRIME is on the rise, while the num­ber of po­lice of­fi­cers in Eng­land and Wales has fallen by more than 20,000 in just eight years.

Mersey­side Po­lice Com­mis­sioner Jane Kennedy has said on nu­mer­ous oc­ca­sions that the lower level of of­fi­cers jeop­ar­dises pub­lic safety.

But pris­on­ers are sav­ing Mersey­side’s cash-strapped po­lice force hun­dreds of thou­sands of pounds, Sefton coun­cil says.

Un­der the Mersey­side Of­fender Men­tor­ing Project, serv­ing pris­on­ers act as men­tors to men on their in­duc­tion to prison.

The scheme op­er­ates in Sefton, Liver­pool, Wir­ral and St He­lens and aims to en­gage with those in prison and pre­vent them from re­of­fend­ing.

Men on the project are sup­ported through­out their time in cus­tody.

This ser­vice is fur­ther sup­ported by a bank of vol­un­teer men­tors who will help and sta­bilise the of­fend­ers on re­lease and help them with their ac­tion plans to over­come bar­ri­ers they are fac­ing and change their of­fend­ing be­hav­iour.

Ac­cord­ing to Sefton Coun­cil’s web­site, the project is a suc­cess.

Of the 228 of­fend­ers who en­gaged with the project last year, just 34 (15%) re-of­fended com­pared with a na­tional av­er­age ex­pec­ta­tion of 60%.

Based on the pro­file of pre­vi­ous of­fences com­mit­ted, the es­ti­mated cost per crime com­mit­ted by of­fend­ers un­der­tak­ing the ser­vice is £3,097 – mean­ing this project saved just un­der £320,000 in 12 months.

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