Napo says it is not allowed to share Grayling’s probation evidence with the public

Napo members on strike in Gloucester, 2013

Napo members on strike in Gloucester, 2013

Napo says it has been gagged about its safety concerns over the government’s plans to privatise the probation service.

Earlier this year, the High Court ordered Justice Secretary Chris Grayling to hand over his safety evidence to the union but on Friday the court refused to allow the union to share any of the evidence with the public. Instead Grayling has been allowed to keep bidders and the public in the dark about the dangers that exist in the system and the steps he has said he is taking to resolve them.

Napo general secretary Ian Lawrence said: “If the Ministry of Justice is confident that the steps they plan to take will adequately address the existing safety concerns in the system, Napo can see no reason for reluctance to tell the public about those steps. Mr Grayling’s insistence on secrecy raises grave concerns about whether he can deliver on his claims that the system will be safe before it is sold off to private management.”

The union is concerned that Grayling wants to thwart public debate on the privatisation of the probation service and withhold from the public crucial information about their safety once staff in privatised Community Rehabilitation Companies lose ‘dual access’ to the risk records on offenders and are asked to take on more clients.  It also claims the Justice Secretary is trying to keep figures on staff shortages and soaring sickness rates out of the public domain.

 

 


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Tim Lezard

Campaigning journalist, editor of @Union_NewsUK, NUJ exec member; lover of cricket, football, cycling, theatre and dodgy punk bands

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