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Probation: Manpower

Volume 461: debated on Thursday 21 June 2007

To ask the Minister of State, Ministry of Justice what her most recent estimate is of the number of (a) probation officer and (b) probation service officer vacancies in each probation area in England and Wales. (140427)

Not all Probation Areas in the National Probation Service operate a set establishment against which vacant posts can be measured. As a more representative alternative, Probation Areas are required to report regularly on the number of active vacancies they have. An active vacancy is one which a Probation Area is actively trying to fill through a recruitment process.

Figures for 31 December 2006 show that there were a total of 8343.64 full-time equivalent Probation Officers in post in England and Wales. On the same date there were 70.27 full-time equivalent vacancies that were actively being recruited to. Therefore active vacancies accounted for 0.84 per cent. of the total posts available at that time.

Additionally, the National Probation Service employs 6,502.74 full-time equivalent probation service officers, who also deliver front-line services to offenders. At this time, there were 203.00 full-time equivalent vacancies, equating to 3.03 per cent. of the total posts available.

The figures presented in the following table show active vacancies for each Area, in terms of full-time equivalent value, for the Probation Officer and Probation Service Officer grades at the close of Quarter 3 06/07 (1 October to 31 December 2006).

Probation officer and probation service officers vacancies (as at 31 December 2006)

All vacancies

Probation officer vacancies

Probation services officer vacancies

Area

Total

Total vacancies

Vacancies (as a percentage of total vacancies)

Vacancies (as a percentage of total posts1)

Total vacancies

Vacancies (as a percentage of total vacancies)

Vacancies (as a percentage of total posts1)

Avon and Somerset

7.90

3.00

37.97

1.38

0.00

0.00

0.00

Bedfordshire

1.40

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

Cambridgeshire

4.00

1.00

25.00

0.99

0.00

0.00

0.00

Cheshire

15.74

3.00

19.06

2.08

9.44

59.97

7.24

Cumbria

5.96

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

Derbyshire

4.60

0.60

13.04

0.45

2.00

43.48

187

Devon and Cornwall

15.68

3.60

22.96

1.71

3.41

21.75

2.26

Dorset

8.40

1.30

15.48

1.53

4.80

57. 14

6.25

Durham

1.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

Dyfed Powys

4.39

1.70

38.72

2.52

0.69

15. 72

1.31

Essex

5.10

0.00

0.00

0.00

2.10

41.18

1.20

Gloucestershire

6.00

2.00

33.33

2.91

3.00

50.00

5.76

Greater Manchester2

n/a

n/a

Gwent

2.10

0.00

0.00

0.00

1.00

47.62

1.01

Hampshire2

n/a

n/a

Hertfordshire

3.50

3.00

85.71

3.34

0.50

14.29

0.59

Humberside

28.10

5.60

19.93

2.84

12.10

43.06

7.45

Kent

12.72

4.00

31.45

1.99

3.00

23.58

1.78

Lancashire

1.50

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

Leicestershire

13.00

1.10

8.46

0.66

11,40

87.69

5.60

Lincolnshire

4.50

0.00

0.00

0.00

3.50

77.78

4.75

London

104.00

13.00

12.50

1.18

84.00

80.77

7.87

Merseyside

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0,00

0.00

0.00

Norfolk

6.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

3.00

50.00

2.08

North Wales

3.00

0,00

0.00

0.00

3.00

100.00

3.65

North Yorkshire

4.10

0,00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

Northamptonshire

16.85

8.00

47.48

7.01

2.00

11.87

2.69

Northumbria

11.21

2.00

17.84

0.70

3.00

26.76

1.60

Nottinghamshire

8.50

0.00

0.00

0.00

6.00

70.59

2.93

South Wales

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

South Yorkshire

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

Staffordshire

2.50

2.50

100.00

1.40

0.00

0.00

0.00

Suffolk

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

Surrey

18.87

3.27

1733

3.87

9.00

47.69

8.00

Sussex

4.00

2.00

50.00

1.07

1.00

25.00

0.76

Teesside

11.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

10.00

90.91

9.31

Thames Valley

23.50

4.00

17.02

1.68

13.50

57.45

5.34

Warwickshire

11.16

1.00

8.96

1.59

5.66

50. 72

11.26

West Mercia

8.76

1.00

11.42

0.63

3.00

34.25

265

West Midlands2

n/a

n/a

West Yorkshire

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

Wiltshire

10.70

3.60

33.64

4.55

2.90

27. 10

5.48

NPS

389.74

70.27

18.03

0.84

203.00

52.09

3.03

1 Total PO and PSO posts are ‘staff in post’ plus the number of active vacancies.

2 Hampshire, Greater Manchester and West Midlands Probation Areas are unable to provide data on active vacancies.