Government agree to look at barriers to wider use of arts in criminal justice settings
The government has responded to a report by the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee into the social impact of participation in culture and sport.
Clinks and the National Criminal Justice Arts Alliance (NCJAA) provided evidence to the committee, whose final report recommended that the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) and Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) should jointly commission an independent review of arts provision in prisons.
While not committing to a full review, the government has said it will conduct a stocktake exercise through the Arts Forum to identify opportunities to increase access to arts for people in prison. The response states:
[…] access to arts across the prison estate, and for those under community supervision, is not as consistent as it should be. The Government is therefore proposing to undertake a stocktake exercise, with the NCJAA and other leading arts organisations working in this arena, to establish what the current barriers are that may be preventing its wider, routine use and what actions may be necessary to increase access.
The NCJAA looks forward to working with MoJ, DMCS, Arts Council England and other arts organisations to achieve this.
Image: NCJAA annual meeting 2019, credit Erika Flowers