Probation service for Solihull rated Inadequate - The Solihull Observer

Probation service for Solihull rated Inadequate

Solihull Editorial 18th Aug, 2022   0

THE PROBATION service for Solihull has been rated as Inadequate by inspectors.

Birmingham North, East and Solihull Probation Delivery Unit (PDU) found cases were not being managed effectively and issues with multi-agency working.

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Probation gave Birmingham North, East and Solihull PDU an overall rating of ‘inadequate’, with a score of just two out of a possible 27.

Across all five areas of court work and case supervision the PDU was rated as inadequate.

Within organisational delivery, leadership and services were also rated as inadequate, with only staff and information and facilities being rated ‘requires improvement’.

The service was inspected just over a year after the unification of probation services across the region.

The report noted since the Ofsted led Solihull Joint Targeted Area Inspection following the death of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes ‘operational information sharing arrangements have improved.’

It also stated the management team is actively involved in key multi-agency forums but this strength is not reflected in operational delivery and ‘multi-agency working in the supervised cases is not at the required standard and this is undermining the effective management of cases’.

Inspectors noted the staffing levels were generally in line with target figures but also pointed out the PDU had an inexperienced workforce which had ‘not been helped by the amount of home working.’

The inspectors called on managers to ensure office attendance so inexperienced staff have the necessary support for their professional development.

Chief inspector of probation, Justin Russell, said: “It is at the heart of the work of any probation service to fully support the people on probation and to protect the public.

“Unfortunately, this support is not being delivered by Birmingham North, East and Solihull PDU. Whilst staffing levels are broadly on target and a comprehensive range of services were potentially available, the quality of casework we inspected was disappointing.

“Attention is required to improve the quality of supervision being provided by probation staff, including in their work with women on probation. Our inspection findings set out what must be done for the service to improve, in order to help those they supervise change their lives for the better and protect the local community.”

There were eight recommendations following the inspection, five were aimed at changes at a local level, calling on Birmingham North, East and Solihull to improve their quality of work around risk of harm and their sentence management for women.

The remaining three recommendations were for the Probation Service – West Midlands region and Her Majesty Prison and Probation Service.


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