BAME Offenders Citizen’s Jury
Evidence suggests that following release from prison, many former inmates, especially those of South Asian heritage who identify as Muslim, struggle to reintegrate back into society due to various complex factors. Two Citizen’s Jury (CJ) groups, one from Blackburn with Darwen and one from Burnley and Pendle was planned. The CJ was designed to include residents from each area who would actively participate in conversations around the difficulty of supporting BAME young men to reintegrate into society after leaving prison and minimise reoffending.
By the end of the project, the Jury members felt that there was a role that communities can play in supporting ex-offenders coming back into society. They felt that there is space for a group like them that can help people to transition from prison back into society. They understand that there is support out there but more could be done, and understanding that support within prison does not translate into actual support once they are released. They recommended that support needs to be in place to make sure the following is completed before release: benefits, bank accounts, housing, family, life skills, care package and health.
For more information see the project report.