Jane Hutt AM, Deputy Minister and Chief Whip
I was very concerned to learn that on Thursday 14 February 2019, Working Links (Employment) Limited and its 3 Community Rehabilitation Companies (CRC’s), including the Wales CRC went into administration.
We have been calling for the reunification of probation services for some time and I am keen for this to happen as soon as possible.
I welcome the update as set out in the written statement from the Secretary of State for Justice David Gauke of 18th February 2019 and I received assurances yesterday from HMPPS that it is intended that offender management services in Wales will be transferred to HMPPS by the end of 2019. This represents an acceleration of this reunification process in Wales which I support.
In the interim, I have received assurances that the arrangements HMPPS have put in place will not affect those who had previously been supported by Working Links and the Wales CRC and that standards of service will be maintained.
I will continue to communicate with UK government ministers to ensure that the assurances set out today are delivered. Welsh Government and HMPPS officials will continue to work to improve the effectiveness of the wider probation system in Wales.