JUSTICE with prison philanthropist Edwina Grosvenor
In Conversation with... Michael Spurr
Please note, this episode contains descriptions of conditions in prison including suicide that some listeners may find distressing.
In this week’s episode, Edwina speaks to Michael Spurr, the former Chief Executive of His Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS). Starting out as a Prison Officer in HMP Leeds in 1983, Michael has occupied a variety of roles in prisons and probation, including serving as Chief Executive of HMPPS from 2010-2019.
In this wide-ranging conversation, Michael reflects on his 36 years working in the justice system – from the appalling conditions he witnessed in the 80’s and 90’s, to the changes that have transformed the justice system into what we recognise today. Edwina and Michael also discuss the impact of ministerial flux on those working in the justice system, and what he wants the future of HMPPS to look like.
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This podcast is created and produced by The London Podcast Company.
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8. Exploring… reform of the Justice System for Mothers31:13In our final episode in our series exploring motherhood in the justice system, Edwina reflects on what we’ve heard, and looks to the solutions to some of the challenges we’ve explored this series. Lilly Lewis, Women’s Involvement Advisor at One Small Thing, returns to discuss her thoughts and feelings on what she’s heard on the series, and shares what she hopes those listening will take away. We explore the need to continue to work together across the sector to campaign for reform and hear from Naomi and Sam from Birth Companions on the No Birth Behind Bars campaign. Edwina also speaks to Emma Plugge who is the lead at the University of Southampton for the evaluation of Hope Street, our residential community for women and their children that aims to be a blueprint for change across the Justice system. To conclude this series we look forward with hope that the justice system can finally be reformed to better support mothers and their children.Read more about the One Small Thing charity here.Twitter - @OSTCharityThis podcast is created and produced by The London Podcast Company.
7. Exploring… the voices of children affected by maternal imprisonment.22:46In this episode we focus on the experiences and voices of children affected by maternal imprisonment. So often children are kept in the dark about what is happening, or their views and wishes are overlooked. This episode contains the voices of children who have been affected alongside professionals working to improve the support available.We hear from Farhana and Tiff who have both been personally affected by their mother going to prison and have also written blogs on this topic for One Small Thing. They both describe experiences of being ignored and overlooked by the professionals around them.We also speak to Sarah Beresford, Prison Reform Trust Associate and Churchill Fellow who explains how Child Impact Assessments can equip adults and services to listen more closely to the needs of children with mothers in the criminal justice system. A full podcast episode with Sarah can be accessed here.We hear from Sarah Burrows, founder of Children Heard and Seen, a charity she set up to support children and families affected by parental imprisonment. A full podcast episode on Children Heard and Seen can be accessed here. Sarah speaks about their important work, as well as the new Operation Paramount - a partnership with Thames Valley Violence Reduction Unit and Police which is the first-ever mechanism to identify children when their parent goes to prison. You can see a video about Operation Paramount here: https://www.tvvru.co.uk/project/paramount/Read more about the One Small Thing charity here.Twitter - @OSTCharityThis podcast is created and produced by The London Podcast Company.
6. Exploring… the experiences of black and racially minoritised mothers in the justice system26:20In this week’s episode, Edwina explores the issues affecting black and racially minoritised mothers in the justice system. She speaks to two researchers at the cutting edge of improving knowledge of these experiences. Dr Sinem Bozkurt is a Lecturer in Criminology at the University of Westminster and an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Her PhD explored the prison and post-prison experiences of racially minoritised mothers. Monica Thomas is an ESRC funded PhD researcher at Cardiff University. Monica's PhD research focuses on the experiences of Black mothers in and after imprisonment, using Black feminist narrative methods. In this episode, Sinem and Monica share some of the findings of their research, and discuss how race intersects with motherhood experiences in the justice system. Learn more about Sinem https://www.westminster.ac.uk/about-us/our-people/directory/bozkurt-sinem-0#aboutLearn more about Monica https://www.cardiff.ac.uk/people/research-students/view/1713147-thomas-monicaRead more about the One Small Thing charity here.Twitter - @OSTCharityThis podcast is created and produced by The London Podcast Company.
5. Mothers in prison – a social work perspective36:38In this week’s episode, Edwina speaks to Becky Wray and Katia Parent, the two family social workers who are part of the pilot project run by the Prison Advice and Care Trust (Pact) that sees family social workers being based inside women’s prisons for the first time.We hear the unique perspectives of these social workers – the difficult job of managing the connection or separation between mothers and their children, and navigating the prison and care system in-between.The Farmer Review (2017) recommended Social Workers to be present in every women’s prison. In 2019, and in partnership with Prison Advice and Care Trust (Pact), this three-year pilot project (funded by the Sylvia Adams Foundation) began which saw two family social workers being placed in two prisons for women. You can read about the evaluation of the first year of the pilot led by Professor Alyson Rees at CASCADE (Cardiff University) here and an article by the team and Dr Lucy Baldwin here. To learn more about the work of the Prison Advice and Care Trust (Pact) visit https://www.prisonadvice.org.uk/Follow Pact on Twitter @prisonadviceRead more about the One Small Thing charity here.Twitter - @OSTCharityThis podcast is created and produced by The London Podcast Company.
4. Exploring… pregnancy and birth in the justice system, part 250:32Please note this episode contains discussion of traumatic births and infant mortality that some listeners may find upsetting. This week we are continuing the exploration of pregnancy and birth in the justice system. In our last episode Edwina spoke with Dr Laura Abbott, a registered midwife and Associate Professor in Research at The University of Hertfordshire, who has extensively researched women’s experiences of pregnancy in criminal justice settings. In this episode we’ll be delving deeper into more of the data around pregnancy in prison, and learning about the lived experience of those who have been pregnant in prison. Suzy* is a trustee and Lived Experience Team member of Birth Companions, a women’s charity dedicated to tackling inequalities and disadvantage during pregnancy, birth and early motherhood. Suzy has lived experience of pregnancy in prison, and works with Dr Laura Abbott’s on the Lost Mothers Project, a pioneering study exploring how women and professionals involved with the justice system, experience enforced separation of newborn babies. In the episode, Suzy shares more about her experience of pregnancy in prison, and explains why prison can never be a safe place for pregnant women and babies. We’ll also be hearing from Dr Miranda Davies, the lead for prisoner health research at the Nuffield Trust. The work Miranda leads is the first time routine hospital data at a national level has been used to describe how often those in prison use hospital services, and for what reasons. Miranda shares more about the data they’ve collected on pregnant women in prison, published in their recent report ‘Inequality on the Inside’. Learn more about the work of Birth Companions: www.birthcompanions.org.uk Read the Nuffield Trust’s report ‘Inequality on the inside: Using hospital data to understand the key health care issues for women in prison’ *Not her real nameRead more about the One Small Thing charity here.Twitter - @OSTCharityThis podcast is created and produced by The London Podcast Company.
3. Exploring… pregnancy and birth in the justice system, part 101:06:57In this episode, we explore pregnancy and birth in the justice system. What are the experiences of those who enter prison pregnant and are faced with giving birth inside? And what impact does imprisoning pregnant women have on their safety, and their baby’s? To help us explore these questions, Edwina spoke to Dr Laura Abbott, a registered midwife and Associate Professor in Research at The University of Hertfordshire. Laura’s has extensively researched women’s experiences of pregnancy in criminal justice settings, and is currently working on the Lost Mothers Study Project which will explore how women and professionals involved with the criminal justice system, experience enforced separation of newborn babies. In this episode, Laura shares more about her work and how her research is paving the way for policy changes to improve outcomes for pregnant women in the justice system. Learn more about the Lost Mothers Project: https://lostmothers.org/Explore Laura’s research: https://researchprofiles.herts.ac.uk/en/persons/laura-abbott/projects/Find Laura on Twitter @midwifeteacher Please note this episode contains discussion of traumatic births and infant mortality that some listeners may find upsetting In our next episode, we will be continuing the exploration of pregnancy and birth in the justice system. We’ll be delving deeper into some of the data and hearing from Suzy*, who has lived experience of pregnancy in prison, and works with Laura on the Lost Mother’s Project team. *Not her real nameRead more about the One Small Thing charity here.Twitter - @OSTCharityThis podcast is created and produced by The London Podcast Company.
2. Exploring… a mother’s rights in the justice system30:04In this week’s episode, Edwina explores what rights mothers in the justice system have. She speaks to Kate Lill, Women Prisoners Caseworker at the Prisoners’ Advice Service, whose role involves providing free legal advice to women in prison, and making sure they are able to assert their rights. Prisoners’ Advice Service (PAS) are a charity providing free legal advice to those in prison. They run a dedicated freephone number for women in prison providing them with advice on a range of matters including Family Law. One of their desired outcomes of their work with women is that, even though they are imprisoned, mothers are able to assert their legal rights in relation to their children and engage effectively in Family Law proceedings. In this episode, Kate explains some of the challenges she helps women navigate, and highlights how the lack of information offered to women around their rights as a mother is having devastating implications for them and their children. To learn more about the work of PAS follow them on Twitter @PrisonersAdviceOr visit their website www.prisonersadvice.org.ukIf you are in prison and need legal advice, please find PAS contact information here: www.prisonersadvice.org.uk/about/how-we-do-it/Read more about the One Small Thing charity here.Twitter - @OSTCharityThis podcast is created and produced by The London Podcast Company.
1. Mothers in the justice system – the key issues and challenges47:23In this first episode in our series exploring motherhood in the justice system, Edwina sat down with Lilly Lewis, Women’s Involvement Advisor at One Small Thing, to discuss some of the key issues and challenges facing mothers in the justice system. Lilly is a survivor and campaigner on Domestic Abuse who started her campaigning work whilst in prison. After being sentenced in 2016 to 8 years in prison, she began to work with APPEAL as a Women's Justice Ambassador. Lilly also works at WHAG supporting young women at risk of homelessness. In her role at One Small Thing, Lilly ensures the voices of women affected by the justice system are included across our work, and writes a regular blog for us. In this episode, Edwina and Lilly reflect on what has led them both to dedicate their time to advocating for changes to improve the outcomes for women in the justice system, and their children. We will also be hearing excerpts from a range of past expert contributors to the JUSTICE podcast on this topic. In this upcoming series of JUSTICE we will be delving deeper into the issues discussed in this episode, and speaking to expert guests each week to further shed light on the challenges mothers face in the justice system – and what we could be doing differently. Read Lilly’s blog https://onesmallthing.org.uk/blogRead more about the One Small Thing charity here.Twitter - @OSTCharityThis podcast is created and produced by The London Podcast Company.
New JUSTICE Series Coming Soon!01:15Introducing our new series of JUSTICE where we will explore the experiences of mothers in the justice system - from women who enter prison pregnant and give birth inside, to those who are separated from their children through imprisonment and involvement from social services. With those working on the front line, and those with lived experience, this series sheds light on the untold stories of mothers in the justice system, and their children. Each episode Edwina will be speaking to expert guests and exploring what needs to change. Our series on Motherhood in the Justice System will be out this Spring. To keep up to date with all the latest episode releases subscribe to JUSTICE, and follow us on Twitter @OSTCharity.