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Staff Blog: Good Judgment

When I studied law at university 30 years ago I found reading court judgments an odd experience. They were almost always written by men. It struck me that women seemed to be barred from being judges and I didn't understand why. They were often very long. They were obviously written by very intelligent people but did not appear to be the kind of smart people I knew who lived in the same world as me. They did not use the same kind of language I was used to and I often found the meaning of certain passages difficult to decipher. This was not just a matter of education. I like words. I like to read and listen to people who are articulate and have a rich vocabulary. Once I had developed the abili

Colleague Testimonial: Catherine Begley

Lisa Burton has shown an extraordinary amount of dedication to achieve the best outcome for my client. She has tirelessly sought out professionals who can help with his case and assertively prompted others to complete their work in a timely manner. She has also identified suitable placements that will be able to meet his complex needs and encouraged the Local Authority to explore all suitable options on his behalf. Her drive and resilience in finding ways to strengthen the case to the Parole Board to support his release has been inspirational to witness. If only all prisoners had the benefit of her proactive approach! Catherine Begley Care Act and Learning Disability Advo

We need to talk about sex

Large numbers of prisoners in limbo waiting for ‘SOTP mess’ to be cleared up Anyone who has served a prison sentence for a sexual offence over the last 25 years will have heard of the SOTP. Thousands of prisoners have completed at least one version of the programme. Many will have served much longer periods in custody because they have been told that they “need to do the SOTP”. Probation officers, Parole Board members and prison officers have consistently told prisoners that they must do the SOTP to reduce their risk of re-offending. It also appears that the SOTP was one of the programmes which the Ministry of Justice (during the Grayling years) tried to sell to foreign jurisdictions. It is

Client Testimonial: "I can't recommend Lisa Burton and her team enough"

I can't recommend Lisa Burton and her team enough. She went above and beyond as a solicitor, on both a professional and a personal level. We have used other solicitors before and not got anywhere near as good results. They really do know the ins and outs regarding prison law. Lisa is very approachable, down to earth and really works hard to get the best results. Highly recommended. Many thanks, Emma

Sex Offender Training with Dr Ruth Tully

In the aftermath of the widely publicised research relating to re-offending rates of prisoners who had participated in Sex Offender Treatment Programmes (SOTP) this in-house training session with Dr Ruth Tully explored: the outcome of the research the alternatives to SOTP including new interventions (Kaizen and Horizon) approaches to people maintaining innocence, elderly prisoners and learning disabled prisoners Part of the training was a live Q & A session for members of SL5’s Facebook Group.

Client Testimonial: "My partner is an ipp. He's very far over his tariff and considered him

My partner is an IPP. He's very far over his tariff (9 years) and considered himself stuck in the system. He grew despondent, as did I, and things were getting desperate for us both... Andrew came along and everything changed. We worked closely together, in fact I drove him mad, and he was always there to calm me down. He is professional, realistic, extremely knowledgeable and has an enormous passion for his work. Over the past year, Andrew has become our strength to carry on and over the months things have fallen into place. My partner was granted release from C cat. (yay!) Both me and my partner feel we owe our future to Andrew. Anon

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