Inspection of Offender Management in Staffordshire and West Midlands

The latest inspection report on adult offending work in England and Wales was published today.

Andy Smith, Assistant Chief Inspector of Probation, said:

“This inspection of offender management work in Staffordshire and West Midlands took place as part of our second programme of Offender Management Inspections. We have examined a representative sample of probation (adult offending) cases from the Trust, and have judged how often the work with each case was done to a sufficiently high level of quality.

“The purpose of offender management has been usefully characterised as to ‘Punish, Help, Change and Control’ each individual offender, in accordance with the need of the individual case. Although our detailed inspection findings can seem rather technical for the general reader, our headline findings can be related to those ‘plain language’ purposes. We have given particular attention to the ‘Control’ purpose – the Public Protection aspect of the work – since this is where independent inspection can add the most value. Our ‘Risk of Harm to others score’ measures how well this has been done.

“Over the Trust as a whole, we judged that the work to keep to a minimum each individual’s Risk of Harm to others – i.e. the ‘Control’ purpose’ – was done well enough 78% of the time. The work to make each individual less likely to reoffend – the ‘Help’ and ‘Change’ purposes – was done well enough 75% of the time. Work to maximise compliance and enforcement was done well enough 78% of the time. A more detailed analysis of our findings is provided in the main body of this report, and summarised in a table in Appendix 1. These figures can be viewed in the context of our findings from the English regions that have been inspected to date – see the Table below.

“The findings from this inspection, for many aspects of practice in the Trust, were above the national average and this represents an improvement on previous inspection results. However, the average figures mask a wide range in the quality of work; some was very high quality, but some was disappointing. The Trust was addressing deficits in practice and managers were aware of the importance of targeting their efforts. Overall, we consider this an encouraging set of findings and we are confident that the Staffordshire and West Midlands Probation Trust is well placed to deliver further improvements in the quality of offender management.”

Scores from the English regions that have been inspected to date Scores for Staffordshire and West Midlands
Lowest Highest Average
Control – ‘Risk of Harm to others’ work (action to protect the public) 64% 83% 74% 78%
‘Help’ and ‘Change’ – Likelihood of Reoffending work
(individual less likely to reoffend)
62% 82% 73% 75%
‘Punish’ – Compliance and Enforcement work
(individual serves his/her sentence)
69% 86% 79% 78%

Download a copy of this press release (PDF, 306.67 kB) (PDF)

Notes to editors

  1. This Offender Management Inspection 2 programme started in September 2009. Adult offending work is being inspected by visits to all NOMS areas and trusts over a three-year period from September 2009.
  2. The purpose of offender management has been usefully characterised as to ‘Punish, Help, Change and Control’ each individual offender, in accordance with the need of the individual case. Although our detailed inspection findings can seem rather technical for the general reader, our headline findings can be related to those ‘plain language’ purposes. We have given particular attention to the ‘Control’ purpose – the Public Protection aspect of the work – since this is where independent inspection can add the most value. Our ‘Risk of Harm to others score’ measures how well this has been done.
  3. Andy Smith can be contacted by 07771527327 or by email (E-mail address)