New report shows Covid-19’s impact on voluntary sector in criminal justice
The Covid-19 pandemic has had a profound and severe impact on arts organisations and practitioners working in the criminal justice system. The challenges of the pandemic are compounded by the closed nature of prisons and slower pace of recovery compared to the wider community. However, these services have never been more needed.
Clinks’ research report launched in December 2020 shows that, despite the challenges, arts organisations have responded innovatively to the restrictions in place in the community and prisons. But we have real cause for concern about the long-lasting impact, especially given that people working in the arts have faced encouragement from the government to retrain in other professions.
During the pandemic, Clinks has been collecting information about how voluntary organisations working in the criminal justice system in England and Wales have been faring, including specific information about arts organisations and practitioners. The research has helped build an in-depth picture about the impact of Covid-19 on voluntary organisations and practitioners working in the criminal justice system and the people they support.
The report, launched today, explores how the pandemic has impacted four key areas:
- The services being delivered
- People in the criminal justice system
- Staff and volunteers
- Funding and financial sustainability.
Voluntary organisations are key to responding to people’s needs during Covid-19 and in recovery from this crisis. A full and equal partnership between these organisations and prisons, probation services and central government is critical to creating a fairer and more effective post-pandemic criminal justice system, significantly improving the outcomes of people in the system and the communities they are a part of. Looking to the future, we have the opportunity to address longstanding, systemic problems facing the criminal justice system and the people within it.