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After twenty- five years working at the very heart of Her Majesty’s Prison Service, first running some of Britain’s most notorious institutions and then inspecting them, John Podmore came to a devastating conclusion. Prison simply does not work. Too many of us believe that prison is a deterrent. Too many think that when prisoners are locked up they cannot commit crime. Loss of freedom, separation from loved ones, an irreparably damaged future – all these may strike fear in the hearts of the middle classes, but for most behind bars they are just an occupational hazard, often no worse than the lot in life they have already drawn. And once in prison, life continues uninterrupted – organised crime, drug-dealing, theft and intimidation all flourish under bad management and a blind eye. There is no incentive to change.
The failure of the prison system is a problem that is not going to disappear. Reo ending, overcrowding and corruption must all be addressed. Hard-won experience and remarkable compassion make Out of Sight, Out of Mind a much needed insight into the disaffected society growing in the shadows of our own – it is a call to arms that we ignore at our peril.


illuminating book about our penal system

John Harding, Daily Mail Online

'Podmore displays a humane intelligence throughout'

Stephen Poole , The Guardian

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  • eBook
  • ISBN: 9781849543002
  • 19 February 2012
  • £12.99

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