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Volume 585: debated on Tuesday 9 September 2014

15. What assessment he has made of the potential merits of joint working between probation trusts and police forces to reduce reoffending. (905247)

I think we are all agreed that to tackle reoffending to protect the public, it is critical for the national probation service and community rehabilitation companies to work very closely with our local police forces.

Operation Castlemain is a police-led initiative to tackle street drinking in Hereford. Local probation officers and other agencies join police on the streets in areas where street drinkers are known to congregate. The result is a better environment for the public, closer working relations between the police and probation service and a higher profile for probation with people at risk of offending. Will the Minister join me in praising this excellent example of joint working?

I will praise the work going on in my hon. Friend’s constituency and work that is going on around the country. Joint working and joint partnerships are important. I would also like to pay tribute to street pastors who do a fantastic job in constituencies, including my own.