05 January 2021
At the event, which was chaired by Dr Victoria Knight of De Montfort University, Aiden explained how the pandemic has helped to create a climate which enables conversations about digital technology in prisons.
Prison authorities have put strict restrictions in place to try to avoid Covid outbreaks. Face to face education has been temporarily suspended and many third party resettlement services have been unable to enter the prison. Digital technology could help to mitigate some consequences of the lockdown.
Reform’s report provides an up-to-date assessment of the potential for digital services in prisons, and describes key areas they think the government must focus on for progression.
Digital technology would also support staff efficiency which in turn enables staff to spend more time supporting prisoners. Other benefits are access to education and learning materials and improving resettlement outcomes.Read the PLA’s briefing on digital technology around the world here
Aiden outlined five key ways to ensure a new strategy would be successful:
A question and answer with Victoria, Aiden and the audience covered these themes in more depth, and also touched on prison staff training, designing technology to meet the needs of all groups of users, public opinion towards technology in prison, and evidence and outcomes. Listen to the full webinar on our SoundCloud page.
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