Reducing the use of imprisonment. Lessons from Probation Day Centres in England and Wales: 1970–2000

AuthorMaurice Vanstone,Philip Priestley
Published date01 March 2023
Date01 March 2023
Subject MatterArticles
Reducing the use of
imprisonment. Lessons
from Probation Day
Centres in England and
Wales: 19702000
Maurice Vanstone
Swansea University, UK
Philip Priestley
Independent Scholar, UK
Day Reporting Centres as an alternative to prison have become a feature of the
Criminal Justice Systems of most States in America. In contrast, Day Centres have vir-
tually disappeared from the curricula of Probation services in England and Wales. In
this paper we look back on the short history of day centre provision in this country and
examine what can be learned from its different forms and assess the viability of
reintroducing the concept as a means of signif‌icantly reducing the use of imprison-
ment this side of the Atlantic.
probation, day centres, prison, rehabilitation, practice, organisational change
A half a century ago, the concept of day centre provision as an alternative to custody
saw the light of day in England and Wales (Mair, 1988; Vanstone, 1985) and soon
after in 1986, in what could possibly be a rare example of criminal justice policy
being transferred from the United Kingdom to the USA, an Alternative
Corresponding Author:
Maurice Vanstone, College of Law, Swansea University, Singleton Park, Swansea, SA2 8PP, UK.
Article The Journal of Communit
and Criminal Justice
Probation Journal
2023, Vol. 70(1) 1930
© The Author(s) 2022
Article reuse guidelines:
DOI: 10.1177/02645505211070085

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