Routine practice in staffed community accommodation (approved premises) in England and Wales: Quantitative benchmarking from the first year of a longitudinal study

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Abstract

Background

In England and Wales, ‘approved premises’ offer 24-hour staffed accommodation for high-risk offenders, most of whom are returning to the community from prison. With a move towards a standardised operating model, it is essential to be able to measure outcomes.

Aims

Our aim is to collate and evaluate ‘benchmarks’ for approved premises.

Methods

A cross-sectional, descriptive design was used to establish the impact of existing practice in all four approved premises in Wales. Data on well-being, life satisfaction, attitudes to violence and problem-solving abilities were recorded with 114 male residents (of 486), and attitudes to personality disorder and personal well-being/burnout with 30 staff (of 86), in both narrative style and according to a number of scales used within criminal justice and healthcare systems. Perceptions of environmental climate were assessed with both groups. Scores were compared with those from reference groups, including prisoners and secure hospital patients. Criminological outcomes (e.g. prison recall) were obtained for all 486 men.

Results

Scores on the scales used were broadly comparable with those in relevant reference groups, but some showed floor or ceiling effects. Recall rates, whether directly from the premises or after further onward movement, were about 42% overall, comparable with those reported for similar offenders elsewhere.

Conclusions

This paper provides a short battery of measurements for use as benchmarks of experience and outcomes in staffed community accommodation for high-risk men. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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