11/11/2012 Sunday Politics North East and Cumbria


11/11/2012

Andrew Neil and Richard Moss with the latest political news and debate, including interviews with the defence secretary Philip Hammond and deputy Labour leader Harriet Harman.


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A big increase in size and a new name for the Territorial Army, but

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can it really plug the gaps left by a government cuts in the regular

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Apology for the loss of subtitles for 2142 seconds

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The warmest of welcomes to your local part of the show. Coming up,

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is the government right to use the expanded Territorial Army to fill

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gaps left by cuts to the regular armed forces? Joining me to talk

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about that and the rest of the week's news,... Stephen Hughes,

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let's talk about the Bishop of Durham becoming the head of the

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Church of England. What do you make of it? I'm pleased that he's been

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elevated in that way. It is a pity he wasn't around a bit longer. I

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was very impressed by his grasp of the problems facing young people in

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the area. He has got the ability that will allow him to form --

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perform extremely well at a national level. The new Archbishop

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of Canterbury, it poses quite a challenge for the Prime Minister.

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He's been outspoken on poverty -- and the economy. It is wonderful

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what he has done so far. I have seen him up with the Banking

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Commission and he said a lot of things I would like to hear more.

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It is wonderful that we have a genuine theologian going down from

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the North East the Westminster. is also an opponent of gay marriage.

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Another potential clash with the Prime Minister. Her we will see

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what happens when that pans out. Not worried about it? No. OK. Let's

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move on to another subject and verb government is to expand a

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Territorial Army. It will be doubled in size. With a cut of

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20,000 personnel planned in the regular army, can those TA

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reservists really fill the gap? I want you to look at the board and

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copied down... He Eton Manor School, Newcastle, and in front of class,

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Mr Parker. I and the schools inclusion manager, but I have

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another responsibility which includes managing the dinner duties.

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I am at the liaison officer as well. But Mr Parker is also known as

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something else, a major part of. For 90 days a year he serves as a

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Territorial Army officer. Today he is in charge of the school's own

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cadet force Remembrance Day parade, but he has served with the

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Territorial Army all over the world. I've served in Northern Ireland as

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an infantry soldier and in 2004 I was deployed to Iraq. In 2009 by

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deployed to Afghanistan. The Territorial Army and the army as a

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whole, they give you values and standards. If you display those in

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schools as well, at the pupils respond well. By and large they

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treat you with the same kind of values. In the future Major

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Parker's Odette might have more chance of combining a military

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career with real guns and an outside job. The government wants

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to double the Territorial Army's size. Employers will be given more

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idea when staff are needed. At the moment the end of this can be

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called up -- caught up adjust a fortnight's notice. What it brings

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to us is not easily replicated by the members of staff. Sometimes we

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have fat to buy in to replace. We tolerate it and I think we probably

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wish he did not have to go off sometimes, but that is the nature

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of the beast. One more Remembrance Day when we

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paid tribute to the armed forces past, but what will they look like

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in the future? The expansion of the TA comes at a

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sensitive time. Cuts to the regular army have angered many people. In

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this time when money is tight, what is wrong with recruiting more

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people like Major Parker, giving them extra training and making them

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a key part of the armed forces? Don't get me wrong, I'm a great

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supporter of the Territorial Army, I spent many years in the

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Territorial Army. It is fantastic. However we have to look at the

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Territorial Army as it is now. Basically, it is in a dire

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situation. The Territorial Army was piecemeal destroyed in 1999. It has

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not recovered since. Car aren't the government saying what they are

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going to do? They will improve the training and make them fit for

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purpose. Let's look at that. That I will take an example of a local the

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Territorial Army unit. There establishment is 100 men. Their

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current strength is 54. They have had five recruits through the door

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since January this year. Of which two have already departed. The

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Territorial Army are haemorrhaging personnel. If this plan goes ahead

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and we start recruiting or relying more heavily on the TA, there's a

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problem because we will have to make sure there's no overlap

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between the regular army getting disbanded for the TA taking over.

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Is it just numbers that concern you or are you worried that reservists

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will never be able to do the job a regular service -- soldier?

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Reservists can do the job very well. It they get the numbers right, that

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will be OK? That is the million dollar question, can they get the

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numbers? From what I'm hearing, and I speak to territorial officers on

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a regular basis, that will be at a tall order. Thank you.

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I suppose the allegation is this an attempt to devise a policy on the

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cheap. As we changed the way in which we have an army going forward,

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as we withdraw from Afghanistan, and as this comes in over a number

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of years, with �1.8 billion that the government will commit to it,

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you will basically have a territorial reserve, now known as

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the Army Reserve, who will be better equipped, better funded, but

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a lead and more effective as a fighting force. It won't mean

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anything if you can't get the recruits. They have recruited a

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local man from Northumberland who will lead the campaign to do that

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recruitment. He commanded the forces in Iraq. This smacks of

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other government problems. You think of a policy and actually it

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takes a lot of catch-up to get to the position you are in. We cut the

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regular forces, but there won't be these reservists in place to

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replace them. We are not cutting the regular forces now. We are

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planning for a long time in the future. None of this happens until

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after 2015. Is this a sensible thing? The kind of thing happening

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across European countries? It is happening across Europe. It's

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estimated that between 2007 and 2014, we will see a 30 doesn't cut

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back in defence spending across the European Union. -- 30% cutback.

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America is not happy about that. There's another issue. Disbanding

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the second Fusiliers is a mistake. If we are bothered about recruiting

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reservists, we should also be bothered about recruiting regular

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soldiers. The second Fusiliers have been good at that. If they are

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disbanded and the forces from the second Fusiliers disburse to less

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able regiments elsewhere, we may have a problem as Turk -- in terms

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of regular recruits. Have a problem is that you will be expecting

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employers to rip least people for longer periods. That will hit

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businesses. You heard the concern about the inconvenience. I accept

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there's a concern, but the present situation was made very clear in

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your film. There's a 14 day lean time. You can be called up within

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14 days. The way we will do it in the future is this will be planned

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a long time in advance so you will be told of the best part of a year

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or 18 months in advance. It is still an extra costs for employers,

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an extra burden. High I don't think it is a burden provided it is well

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planned and well executed. Shouldn't any responsible employer

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be welcoming staff been involved in the TA? Are I think so. The vast

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majority do. That teacher said it creates difficulties, but they are

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right behind that reservist and that will be generally the case.

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Look at the low ball -- local representatives. Councillors are

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released from their jobs. This happens in a number of areas of

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life. I want to know whether you are reassured by what you're

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hearing. Not in the slightest. To get the Territorial Army back to

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where it was in 1999 will probably take over 10 years. This time

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period goes out of the window. With a corner, it is all very well

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saying they will have a year before they are called up, but what

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happens if we are faced with a situation such as Iran that could

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block any moment and we needed deploy troops very, very rapidly?

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We will not be able to do that in future. He is knocking down some of

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your argument. I don't accept that we are going to be fighting ten-

:47:01.:47:06.

year wars in places like Afghanistan and Iraq in the future.

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There's no appetite in this country at the present time or going for it

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for long ground wars as has been fought in the past. You look at the

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example of Libya, not a single British soldier was on the ground

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in Libya. Thank you. He could with the police commissioner elections

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days away, there's been plenty of debate about how best to tackle

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crime and one obvious way is to stop those break the law from doing

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it again. It is not that easy. In Cumbria

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almost half of the people who go to prison for short sentences reoffend

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within 12 months. That is a higher figure than in big cities like

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There's quite a good selection. years ago Stephen was sent to

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Durham prison for stealing alcohol weeks after being policed. He went

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on to refer the end again. His story is not unusual. Almost half

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the people in Cumbria given short prison sentences go on to break the

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law again. They gave us a train ticket to get me back home to

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Carlisle. I had �40 in my pocket and that was it. Get out and get on

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with it. Very little support. I could not find work. I got

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depressed about it and I slipped back into my old ways. Stephen now

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gets that support from a small charity in Carlisle. It works with

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addicts who often haven't had help to beat their addictions during

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that short time in prison. They come back to their old friends and

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their old associations. If they've had drug or alcohol problems in the

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past, to move on from that, you need support. Her Cumbria might be

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the most sparsely populated area in the country, but when it comes to

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reoffending rates in the north-west, it is top of the list. The latest

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figures show just over 46% of Cumbrians given short sentences

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went on to reoffend within a year of release. That is compared to 38%

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in Merseyside and just over 36% in Greater Manchester. Unlike its more

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urban neighbours, Cumbria lacks support services to bridge the gap

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between prison and life back on civvy street. The population is so

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desperately connected. We also need to get some additional results.

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That will not be easy. It is also fair to say that we need to try to

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create a better voluntary ethos, to get more volunteers involved to

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help a real social problem. Ministry of Justice says it is

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tackling the shamefully high reoffending rates by introducing a

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rehabilitation revolution, but not everyone is convinced that

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rehabilitation is the key to tackling reoffending. The public

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perception is that prison just is not a deterrent. If we are going to

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get offenders turning their lives around and being open to

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rehabilitation, the stick has to be a punishment in prison. Not all

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offenders are given prison sentences. Some are given community

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sentences and those have a much lower rate of reoffending. But

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still, more than a third go on to commit further crimes. As well as

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people serving community sentences, Cumbria probation Trust plays a

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central role in rehabilitating Cumbria's serious prolific

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offenders, but it has no mandate of money to support people who have

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been in prison for 12 months or less. So statutory agencies are not

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funded to address that part of the population. Until something changes

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around that, there's going to be difficulties in having resources

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available to deal with those offenders. It is well known that

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that -- that short sentences are not working and people need some

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level of intervention. He the government is reviewing probation

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services but it remain so to be seen whether it will help clear-up

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Cumbria's reoffending challenges. The position is no better in the

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North East. In Durham and Tees Valley, 47 out of every 100 people

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sent to prison for less than a year end up reoffending within 12 months

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of getting out. You've written a book about the changes you would

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like to see in the prison system. What can we do to lower this

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depressing rate of reoffending? Prison does work. It is a very good

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punishment. But what I would like to see focus upon is what you do

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with the prisoner inside. For far too long, incarceration involved 23

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hours in a cell doing nothing. 50% of all prisoners can't read or

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write. 50% of all prisoners were excluded as children. These people

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are struggling, when they come out of prison, to get a job. Your

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ability to change the way they behave have to be changed in the

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prison itself. If you change that, you changed everything. At the

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moment we have 70% reoffending. That is there were four statistic.

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You need to have literacy, drug treatment and skills. If you get

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those, you will change people. we got the balance wrong between

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punishment and rehabilitation? don't think we have. If you look at

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the example on the continent, particularly the Nordic countries

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within the EU, the number of prisoners by 100,000 of the

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population is half what it is here. In their prisons, for the emphasis

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is not upon retribution, it is upon rehabilitation. It is on family

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visits, training, education, anger management courses, outreach

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courses to employers. These are the sorts of things... Usually half the

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prison officers in male prisons in countries like Denmark are women.

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The emphasis is on normalisation, trying to create a normal

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environment for the prisoners. problem with the arguments you've

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put his that you get that argument from the Police Federation, but the

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public see military courses helping prisoners get qualifications as a

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bit of a pampered life and not as a punishment. I don't have any

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problem with sending people to prison. Both of us would agree that

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if you have committed an offence, present is the right place for you.

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Everybody agrees with that, but it is what you do with them in prison.

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Either you have them locked up and doing nothing so they will not

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change their behaviour. If they can't read or write, they will not

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be able to get a job. If they are drug-addicted, of course they will

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come out and commit offences. If they have no skills, how can you

:54:00.:54:05.

ask them to get a job? Per that sounds great, but the reality

:54:05.:54:08.

appears to be that some of the funding for these rehabilitation

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programmes is being cut. Not in the slightest. Doncaster present is a

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very successful payment by results present set up under that previous

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government and expanded by this government. You have people turning

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people around. The payment that the individual prison receives is

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increased if they turn the person around and they don't reoffend.

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government is looking to pay by results and cut reoffending and

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bringing private companies in. Sensible? I've got no fundamental

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objection to that. I am concerned about the regime's in the prisons.

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Is the emphasis on rehabilitation, normalisation? If it is only about

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punishment and retribution, it will not work. For the Nordic example...

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The fact is that in those countries, the reoffending rate is half what

:54:58.:55:02.

it is here. I talked about the caring approach inside prisons and

:55:02.:55:09.

I think that works. I've read some of your ideas... I'm glad you've

:55:09.:55:17.

read it! Literacy classes, drug programmes. They will cost money up

:55:17.:55:20.

front and your Justice Secretary says he wants to see the money

:55:20.:55:24.

spent go down. How we get the prison system cheaper and better is

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you have less people going to prison. That will benefit the

:55:28.:55:34.

public. It has to go in up front. A there's some consideration now, but

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the way forward, Uni proper mentoring. Yi need people being

:55:39.:55:43.

turned around. Are you convinced the government is prepared to spend

:55:43.:55:49.

money? In the old days, five or 10 years ago, there were 47 key

:55:49.:55:53.

performance indicators for a prison. All of them were security based.

:55:53.:55:58.

Now the fundamental change is it is all about rehabilitation. Thank you.

:55:58.:56:03.

When times get tough, one option is to sell off the family silver. That

:56:03.:56:07.

is what Newcastle council has decided to do by flocking one of

:56:07.:56:17.
:56:17.:56:23.

A unique piece of Newcastle's Heritage is to be sold to hop luck

:56:23.:56:26.

and �90 million funding gap. The Lord Mayor's official coach Dyldin

:56:26.:56:31.

7090 it is up for sale. David Cameron paid a flying visit to

:56:31.:56:34.

Carlisle on Friday end of next week's Police Commissioner

:56:34.:56:37.

elections. Ministers say they are helping more people off benefit and

:56:37.:56:42.

into work. That is not the view of Stephen Hedman. This government are

:56:42.:56:46.

forcing sick people who have got cancer, who have got brain damage

:56:46.:56:50.

and who are dying back into work. It is a disgrace. When will this

:56:50.:56:54.

barbarity end? Her for Middlesbrough by-election will be

:56:54.:57:01.

held on 29th November. The Conservatives will select in the

:57:01.:57:04.

next few days. The government has called off the privatisation of

:57:04.:57:09.

Durham jail, by three companies are still bidding to run Northumberland

:57:09.:57:14.

prison. Ash dieback disease has been identified and clears from

:57:14.:57:24.
:57:24.:57:26.

County Durham and tie inside. -- I haven't persuaded my boss to get

:57:26.:57:31.

me a car yet! Let's talk about ashtrays. This is not what we want

:57:31.:57:35.

from Europe. What is your view on how this has been handled? Be it

:57:36.:57:39.

has been spreading since the early 1990s, starting in Poland, Baltic

:57:39.:57:46.

states, Germany, Sweden, Finland. At European level we have a plant

:57:46.:57:49.

health regime that is being reviewed and has been for the last

:57:49.:57:52.

two years and that should be finished in the next few months. It

:57:52.:57:57.

will include a strengthening of early warning systems.

:57:57.:58:02.

Unfortunately these things cost money. It is worth bearing in mind

:58:02.:58:06.

that we need these mechanisms in place at European level. Or was it

:58:06.:58:10.

inevitable that it would spread to the UK? Has their government done

:58:10.:58:15.

anything wrong? I don't think so. I think for spores that they have

:58:15.:58:20.

this disease can be weaned born and were probably wind born into the

:58:20.:58:24.

areas affected in Norfolk and have probably spread further in any case.

:58:24.:58:33.

There have been other pests we have managed to either a rest of control.

:58:33.:58:37.

The Asian longhorn beetle, fire blight, these things have been far

:58:37.:58:43.

more limited. In this case, the national identity cone reporting of

:58:43.:58:47.

his problem was lacking across the continent. How worried should we

:58:48.:58:53.

be? It has been found close to your consistency -- constituency. It was

:58:53.:58:57.

found most recently in well there. It was found in a very mature tree

:58:57.:59:01.

just outside the National Park. There's containment taking place.

:59:01.:59:06.

It is going to be a problem and everyone should report any worrying

:59:06.:59:10.

signs of deterioration to the Forestry Commission, who are doing

:59:10.:59:16.

a fantastic job. Is there any danger that we could see parts of

:59:16.:59:20.

the countryside shut down? I do think that is a real problem.

:59:20.:59:24.

is an airborne disease. The there's nothing you can do about it

:59:24.:59:28.

travelling. You just have to be very, very watchful. The Forestry

:59:28.:59:32.

Commission have to watch our four Where does pop up. And also we have

:59:32.:59:37.

to stop imports. Labour have criticised the government for

:59:37.:59:43.

inaction. They would do that, wouldn't they? The first ever

:59:43.:59:48.

discovery of this was in February. So in February to October, they

:59:48.:59:53.

visited over 1,000 sites and have chopped down 100,000 trees. Thank

:59:53.:59:57.

you. That's about it from us. You can keep up-to-date by following

:59:57.:00:04.

the on Twitter. There's more on ideas on how to reform our prisons.

:00:04.:00:07.

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