WIP responds to the Residential Women's Centre pilot
WIPs response to the Residential Women's Centre pilot announcement
Today, the government have announced that a pilot 'Residential Women's Centre' will open in Swansea in 2024.
Chief Executive of Women in Prison, Dr Kate Paradine says "There is a strong network of community-based Women’s Centres, usually run by women's charities, that are already proven to be effective solutions to offending and which support thousands of women each year. These organisations focus on addressing the issues that sweep women into contact with the criminal justice system in the first place, such as mental ill health, domestic abuse, and experiences of homelessness. Yet they still aren’t sustainably funded.
The government's new probation-run 'Residential Women’s Centres' might be similar in name to these services, but there are still many unanswered questions about how they will operate in practice, and we are concerned they could exacerbate the harms we see when women are sentenced to short periods in prison. Ultimately, spending £10m on piloting RWCs is a distraction, diverting attention away from investing in solutions that we, and the government, already know work."