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KSS CRC response to National Audit Office report - Transforming Rehabilitation: Progress review

1 March 2019

The National Audit Office (NAO) publishes today a report examining the progress of the Transforming Rehabilitation reforms to the probation service, which took effect in 2015.

The report comes two weeks after the Ministry of Justice transferred probation services in South West England and Wales into KSS CRC, following an evaluation of its options in response to the financial collapse of the former provider.

The NAO also visited KSS CRC as part of its fieldwork for the report released today.

Responding to today’s report, KSS CRC chief executive, Suki Binning said:

“As we transfer probation services in south-west England and Wales into KSS CRC following the collapse of the former provider, we’re seeing at close quarters some of the challenges facing the sector that the National Audit Office sets out in today’s report. An untested approach did not recognise the high fixed cost of service delivery and put too much at risk through the payment by results mechanism. When caseload volumes did not meet projections, this left services struggling to cope.

“This was not the case across the country. Some areas have received investment and were given more freedom and professional autonomy by their private parent company. In Kent, Surrey and Sussex, this allowed us to set up a dedicated research unit and, as the NAO points out in this report, use data in new ways to give the judiciary greater confidence in how sentences are implemented after defendants leave the courtroom. As we look to the future, we need to protect those advances and work together across the sector to improve performance, raise standards and provide value for the taxpayer and communities we serve.”

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