Sunday, June 26, 2011

Worlds Apart

Recent comments by probation and prison staff have boggled my mind.  They illustrate perfectly the gulf that exists between prisoners and their keepers.

These guys give every indication of believing that they help us, supports us, try to get us out.

Prisoners believe that they are inept, dishonest and look for any excuse to keep us in.

Both views are undoubtedly sincere, which is quite depressing.

As this blog partly exists to explore these differing perceptions - welcome.

6 comments:

  1. If they let you go, you'd make their lives hard by criticising them in public. So keeping you in is anyway not inept, is it?
    It's still a waste of my taxes though!

    ReplyDelete
  2. The word Probation officer is red rag to a bull to me. I have only ever met one decent one (Bobbie Cummines, it is you if your reading this) I dare say there may be one or two well meaning ones, but on the whole, most of them have got my back up. It is like dealing with nethanderals, they are so terminally stupid, they can't even write acurate notes in your file. Which is a worry if your liberty depends on it. They are not to be trusted, anyone with any sense should just tell them what they want to hear. God help the poor people who could really use a helping hand when they get out. By the way, if anyone reading this thinks the problem is me, i would understand why you would think that, but no-one else on this earth has made my blood boil like my old probation officer. Prison staff, some and some, some good ones, some bad. like everywhere, (except probation, all with micky mouse degrees from some third rate college.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Its the new generation probation officers, or, in my case social workers who I am more worried about. What they get taught in college these days especially psychology is closer to victim blaming than anything. They then come to the 'profession', maybe with huge financial debts due to the high cost of education or supported by their parents, but know little and want to do as they are told which is to put the blame squarely back onto those who they are supposed to be helping.

    These days the gap between social workers (as I have more experience of them than prison staff or probation) is even bigger and from what I can gather, nobody is happy, not the 'clients' nor the staff. Only those reaping in the dollars from costs cuts and privatisation, they are the ones sporting big cheshire cat got the cream smiles, while we suffer.

    ReplyDelete
  4. A Probation officer's first remit is not to the client as in the old day of assist and befriend etc but to public protection and that can mean anything and is highly subjective. The old days when a PO would undertake the Diploma in Social Work has now been replaced by the Diploma in Probation Studies which is heavily focussed on risk management and public protection. Today, more than ever, probation officers are recalling offenders to prison like its going out of fashion so that the offender will have to start all over again on release if he or she has lost their job, housing etc. I will always advise offenders that probation officers do not exist to help or encourage, they see risk coming out of the woodwork and will recall at the drop of a hat. They are not to be trusted. Don't try and build a relationship with anyone who has the capacity of sending one to prison and never tell them you have problems for too often problems are seen as risks. Too many offenders believe that a smile from their PO and 'how are you' are sincere gestures. No they are not. They're about as sincere as a fox hunter telling you he loves foxes. Just jump through the hoops and tell them what they want to hear. They are not mind readers although they have a notion that they are and can predict the future. They are closer to law enforcement than social work that I wouldn't be surprised if at some time in the future they will be given powers of arrest and search.

    ReplyDelete
  5. A Probation officer's first remit is not to the client as in the old day of assist and befriend etc but to public protection and that can mean anything and is highly subjective. The old days when a PO would undertake the Diploma in Social Work has now been replaced by the Diploma in Probation Studies which is heavily focussed on risk management and public protection. Today, more than ever, probation officers are recalling offenders to prison like its going out of fashion so that the offender will have to start all over again on release if he or she has lost their job, housing etc. I will always advise offenders that probation officers do not exist to help or encourage, they see risk coming out of the woodwork and will recall at the drop of a hat. They are not to be trusted. Don't try and build a relationship with anyone who has the capacity of sending one to prison and never tell them you have problems for too often problems are seen as risks. Too many offenders believe that a smile from their PO and 'how are you' are sincere gestures. No they are not. They're about as sincere as a fox hunter telling you he loves foxes. Just jump through the hoops and tell them what they want to hear. They are not mind readers although they have a notion that they are and can predict the future. They are closer to law enforcement than social work that I wouldn't be surprised if at some time in the future they will be given powers of arrest and search.

    Reply

    ReplyDelete
  6. i think they have in some countries so watch this space! going to see mine on thursday with his loveley fake smile and his patranizing voice if i had the choice i would do bird for however long as long as i didn't have to deal with him.i go to these meetings expecting to get things into prospective but come out feeling worse than ever he sometimes has me thinking i've done this that and the other and i think have i done that? then hang on no i havn't! jesus do i just agree with eveything he said? sometimes i think yes do it get out of here a bit quicker then again no i think not he aint got that proof and this proof and i know i didn't do that! and he certainly don't know what mcat does to you he thinks it's a drug sorry but it's plant fertilizer that when you take it it's twice as bad a cocaine except not as addictive. trying to explain that to someone who does not know anything about or just chooses not to is very hard and frustrating.i just think he aint cut out for the job just my opinion folks

    ReplyDelete