Supreme Court to rule on insufficient provision of probation hostels for former female prisoners

Monday 20 February 2017

Tomorrow, Supreme Court judges will hear the case of R (Coll) v Secretary of State for Justice. The case concerns the patchy provision of approved premises for women who have been released from prison.

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At a time when they are trying to rebuild their lives, many women must live hundreds of miles from home because places are unevenly spread across the country. There are only six probation hostels for women in the country and there are none in Wales or in London. This means that women are likely to be accommodated far from home making resettlement difficult and limiting contact with families and support services. Women are suffering in a failing criminal justice system that is designed to meet the needs of men.

The challenge to the provision of approved premises for women is being made under the Equality Act 2010. The Howard League has been granted permission to intervene in the case by way of written submissions. The organisation is represented by Garden Court's Sally Ireland who is being led by Henrietta Hill QC of Doughty Street Chambers. They are instructed by Clifford Chance Solicitors. All are acting pro bono.

To watch the hearing live online, please visit this page the Supreme Court website at 10:30 on Tuesday 21 February.


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