Publication - FOI/EIR release

Membership of Scottish Advisory Panel for Offender Rehabilitation: FOI release

Published: 29 Jan 2018
Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.
Published:
29 Jan 2018
Membership of Scottish Advisory Panel for Offender Rehabilitation: FOI release

FOI reference: FOI/18/00079
Date received: 4 January 2018
Date responded: 26 January 2018

Information requested

1. Current Membership of the Scottish Advisory Panel for Offender Rehabilitation (the Panel).

2. All Annual Reports since the inception of the Panel.

3. Description of the role of the Panel, including the enabling legislation if established on a statutory basis.

4. All rehabilitative programmes accredited by the panel.

5. The tests for accreditation applied by the Panel.

6. The application for accreditation and assessment of Good Lives(GL) and its later iteration, Moving Forwards, Making Changes (MFMC).

7. Assessment(s) of GL and MFMC carried out in accordance with rigorous, evidence-based standards using either matched treatment and control groups (or randomised controlled trials) and an evaluation of the reconviction rates of each.

8. Articles featuring GL and MFMC in peer-reviewed journals.

Response

The answers to your questions are:

1. The composition of the Scottish Advisory Panel for Offender Rehabilitation (SAPOR) is a non-core, non-regulated public body. This means that members are not considered to be formal Ministerial appointments. Panel members are drawn from both academic and practitioner backgrounds, reflecting the wide interest in offender rehabilitation in Scotland more widely. The current membership consists of the Chair, Professor Elizabeth Gilchrist and panel members, Dr Trish McCulloch, Yvonne Robson, Michele Gilluley, Dr Beth Weaver, Monica Wilson and Erica Bowen.

2. The panel does not produce annual reports.

3. The Scottish Advisory Panel on offender Rehabilitation (SAPOR) was set up in 2012 to replace the Scottish Accreditation Panel for Offender Programmes (SAPOP). SAPOR is jointly sponsored by the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) and the Scottish Government.

SAPOP was abolished in 2010 because it was recognised that a wider advisory remit and broader professional membership would be more beneficial to sponsors. SAPOP's work focused solely on the accreditation of offender programmes and Interventions ('kite marking' offender rehabilitation programmes which met current professional standards).

The overarching objective of SAPOR is to: "Work to reduce re-offending and support desistance by providing advice and approval, setting standards and promoting
excellence in programmes, interventions and processes aimed at rehabilitating people who have offended and by encouraging properly evaluated innovation."

4. The Moving Forward: Making Changes (MFMC) programme is aimed at adult males who have committed sexual offences, or offences that contain a sexual element, and are deemed as presenting a medium and above risk of reoffending. The programme can be delivered by the relevant professionals in both community and custodial settings, using a modular approach tailored to individual needs. The MFMC programme is currently accredited until September 2018.

The Youth Justice Programme (YJP) is aimed at all young people aged 16-23 with a history of offending. The programme was developed by the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) and has been initially delivered with young men HMYOI Polmont.

The YJP is designed to address underlying reasons for offending, with the overall aim to reduce recidivism by promoting pro-social life choices. Current accreditation of YJP runs until September 2021.

In addition, the Caledonian System, an integrated approach to address domestic abuse and improve the lives of women, children and men, is currently going through a process of reaccreditation. This community based-intervention comprises of a two-year programme for adult men who have committed domestic abuse offences and services to women partners/ex-partners and children of programme participants. Inter-agency protocols for joint working also form a key part of this intervention.

The Constructs programme is for persistent offenders, with specific focus on developing problem solving skills and an ability to implement pro-social solutions in situations that might previously have resulted in offending.

The Pathways programme is for those individuals where their offending is clearly linked to their substance use i.e. they offend to fund their use, or they offend under the effects of illicit substances (or alcohol).

The Discovery programme is for those at medium/moderate risk of violence. Individuals appropriate for this programme will have difficulties with emotions, thinking, or interpersonal behaviour that leads to violence.

5. While it is our aim to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide the literature that you have requested because an exemption under (section 35 (1) (c)) applies. The reasons why that exemption(s) applies are explained below.

6. While it is our aim to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide the literature that you have requested because an exemption under (section 35 (1) (c)) applies. The reasons why that exemption(s) applies are explained below.

7. There has been no assessment for either programme, but an evaluation of MFMC is currently underway.

8. While our aim is to provide information whenever possible. However, in this instance, the information you have requested for articles featuring GL and MFMC in peer-reviewed journals is not held by the Scottish Government therefore excemption under (section 17 (1)) applies. The reasons why we don't have the information are explained in the Annex to this letter.

Reasons for not providing information

An exemption applies.

An exemption(s) under section(s) (section 35 (1) (c)) of FOISA applies some of the information you have requested. Information is exempt information if its disclosure under the Act would, or would likely to, prejudice substantially the administration of justice.

This exemption is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption. We recognise that there is some public interest in a greater understanding of offender programmes. However this is outweighed by the public interest in ensuring that the success of the MFMC programme is not undermined by disclosure of information that could be prejudicial to the delivery of the MFMC and other offender programmes.

An exemption applies.

An exemption(s) under section(s) 17(1) of FOISA (information not held) applies to your request for articles featuring GL and MFMC in peer-reviewed journals. The Scottish Government is not required to provide information which it does not have. Although we are aware there are many papers of the Good Lives model in peer reviewed journals, research would need to be carried out to establish this information requested. So the Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested and the Scottish Government is not responsible for other organisations information.

This exemption is not subject to the 'public interest test', so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference

Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG