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The Scottish Government recently announced plans to open two smaller ‘mini prisons’ for women as part of a new strategy to manage women in custody.

The smaller, Community Custody Units (CCU) or ‘mini prisons’ will hold 20 prisoners (all deemed to be low risk) and will be built in the cities of Glasgow and Dundee. The aims of the units are to aid rehabilitation for prisoners by holding them closer to their homes, enabling friends and family to visit more frequently.

These new smaller prisons are said to be part of a larger plan (which includes the demolition of the national female prison, HMP Cornton Dale) to change the way women are treated in the UK by the criminal justice system. It is hoped that these new CCU’s will provide a stronger focus on partnership working and coproduction by maintaining links with families and helping to prevent reoffending.

It is planned for both CCU’s to be opened by the end of 2020.

Colin McConnell, chief executive of the Scottish Prison Service believes that these units should become a real part of the community they are based in:

“Getting it right for those in custody is a key step in ensuring the safety of the entire community. By successfully reintegrating offenders we reduce risk and create safer communities.”

For more information regarding the development of these ‘mini prisons’, keep your eye on Sanctuary Criminal Justice for any updates!
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