While errors are made in only a very small proportion of the total discharges of prisoners in any year, this issue is one that is taken very seriously. The National Offender Management Service has put in place a number of measures to reduce these errors including:
all release in error incidents are reported immediately by telephone to headquarters as a serious incident;
formal investigations are required in all cases and the learning from these investigations acted upon. Where individual (rather than system) failings have been identified disciplinary action has been taken;
Prison governors and regional custodial managers have been required to review sentence calculation and discharge procedures and ensure additional managerial attention is given to this area; and
Additional guidance has been provided to prisons in areas where it was discovered that detailed legislative or policy issues about eligibility for release had been misunderstood by prisons.