Issue 276

Arts and criminal justice

Image of Arts Alliance poster and artwork

The Arts Alliance network and the Arts Forum are determined to keep the arts in criminal justice settings on the political agenda, says Jessica Plant.

The Arts Alliance is a pioneering network of artists, arts organisations, prison staff, academics and policy makers who come together to drive forward arts and creativity in criminal justice settings. We unite leading professionals, enabling a collective voice for this innovative and uniquely challenging area of work. Our mission is to ensure that “all ex/offenders get access to creative opportunities as a springboard to positive change”.

The network has gone from strength to strength...

Also in this feature

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A training programme for artists working in prisons has just gained international accreditation, announces Alan Clarke.

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The Prison Arts Foundation employs artists-in-residence in prisons in Northern Ireland. Alison Smyth explains their approach and achievements.

Image of young people with massive masks

Finding out what young offenders are good at and drawing it out of them can change their lives. Jane Bryant discusses Artswork’s programmes based around the Arts Award.

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Louise Ridley looks at the research indicating that arts projects can encourage prisoners to take part in formal rehabilitation programmes.

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Hannah Hull believes in the importance of critical thinking for socially engaged arts practitioners, now the subject of one of the modules on Cred-ability’s training programme.

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The Prisoners Education Trust is celebrating 25 years of working with offenders and contributing to reduced reoffending rates, says Susannah Henty.

Photo: Rebecca Radmore/Prisoners Education Trust 2014
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Offence-focused group work has been used to reduce re-offending. Louise Heywood explains two key techniques that help offenders to understand and ultimately change their behaviour.

Photo: Gina Print Photography
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Naomi Joseph talks to Lucy Perman about how Clean Break works with female ex-offenders not just in theatre-making but also offering pastoral care.

Photo: Tracey Anderson