Out of Jail and on the Streets

Tue Feb 5, 10.35-11.35pm, BBC1

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Time Out Ratings :

<strong>Rating: </strong>4/5

Caroline Furneaux


‘My world consists of murderers, rapists and armed robbers,’ states one of the remarkable probation officers in this fascinating documentary. Her job sounds hideous, even potentially damaging. Time is spent assessing borderline-illegal pornography to decide on its legal status. Or listening to paedophiles attempting to justify their actions and deciding on the level of risk they present. Or just hanging out with hopeless recidivists as they beg for one more chance.

The cases we explore range from the deplorable (violent kidnapper David) to the pitiful (schizophrenic Roger, who obeyed the voices in his head and assaulted his mother). What they share is their cost in both time and money, the uncertainty of their conclusion and most of all, their absolute necessity. Whatever it takes, someone has to do this stuff. Let’s hope Chris Grayling watches this film before he goes ahead and privatises the probation service.


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3 comments
Sarah
Sarah

I think you're right Peter - there are BIG changes coming and nothing will change that. I'm a front line Probation Officer and I think the documentary was pretty accurate. In my experience, the staff live the job and don't think about the people as a business or as targets. We are highly trained and dedicated people and I'm quite worried that the Government are looking to turn lives into business targets which will be met by possibly less dedicated and trained people who can do a cheaper job. It's very dangerous

Sam M
Sam M

Scary stuff, should be a good watch... Not sure what will be more fascinating, the documentary, or Grayling's idea that the best people to meet offenders at the prison gates are ex-cons...

Peter Bradley
Peter Bradley

"Let’s hope Chris Grayling watches this film before he goes ahead and privatises the probation service." You are joking aren't you? Whatever the programme says, it's not going to change the mind of a single politician of any party.

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