LibLink: Clarke fleshes out liberal line on prison

Commentators on Lib Dem Voice are starting to get used to being in agreement with government ministers – sometimes even the Conservative ones.

Such an event occured yesterday, when Ken Clarke spoke to judges at the annual Mansion House Dinner, making the same argument made here a couple of weeks ago.

Crime has fallen in Britain throughout a period of both rising prison populations and throughout the same period of economic growth, with strong employment levels and rising living standards.

“No-one can prove cause and effect. The crime rate fell but was this the consequence of the policies of my successors as home secretary or, dare I gently hint, mine as chancellor of the exchequer at the beginning of a period of growth and strong employment? We will never know.”

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3 Comments

  • Christine Headley 14th Jul '10 - 9:03pm

    And overcrowding prisons with short-term residents makes the whole thing so much worse – no time to work with the short-sentence people to make sure they don’t reoffend, and no time either to work with the longer-sentence people whose offending behaviour needs to be strenuously addressed.

  • Terry Gilbert 16th Jul '10 - 12:00am

    As a former Probation officer of 13 years, I applaud Ken Clarke for his stance, and sympathise with Geoffrey Payne. As an economics/politics graduate, I find the Coalition’s economic policy bizarrely ideological and dangerous, but on Justice they seem to have good intentions, if only they can see them through, in the face of the Tory right and Tory press.

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