Prisoners who study hard whilst imprisoned could be eligible for early release under new plans by justice secretary, Michael Gove.
In what is being described as the first major speech on prison policies, Gove suggests inmates who work towards gaining qualifications in prisons could be allowed to leave earlier than planned under the “earned release” scheme. Gove went on to say more can be done to motivate prisoners to learn and requested higher priority to be given to education in the prison system.
The plans are expected to apply to 86,000 prisoners who are under automatic release once they reach the half way point of their fixed term sentences. Gove’s plans suggest the current automatic release is to be replaced by earned release, which encourages inmates to focus on studying and working in order to lessen their time.
The scheme has been brewing among the Conservative government since 2008 however the requirement for 5,000 additional prison places to accommodate those who fail to respond to the incentive has halted the plan from flourishing.