HC Deb 30 January 2002 vol 379 cc395-6W
Mrs. Brooke

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many prisoners were released on temporary licence in the last year for which figures are available; on how many occasions; for what purpose; and on how many of these occasions the prisoner(a) failed to return and (b) otherwise breached the conditions of the licence. [29526]

Beverley Hughes

[holding answer 23 January 2002]: In the year 2000, 10,559 persons were released from prisons in England and Wales on temporary licence. Licences can be given for a short period, for example, a day to attend a funeral, or may be given several times over a longer period, for example where a prisoner is working outside of the prison and for the purpose of resettlement and preparation for release. A total of 256,837 temporary release licences were granted over the year 2000. 318 of these were failures, the inmate did not return to prison at the time that they were required to. This represents a failure rate of 0.1 per cent. of licences granted and was the lowest rate since 1991.

The purposes for which temporary release from prisons in England and Wales was granted in the year 2000 are given in the table.

There are no data held centrally on how many people have breached the terms of their temporary release other than for failure to return.

Purpose Number of releases
All licences 256,837
Local visit 46,406
Resettlement 66,520
Accommodation 160
Community service 32,158
Employment 21,528
Family ties 11,052
Pre-parole release 535
Probation service 595
In hostel etc. 492
Facility 135,501
Reparation 26,083
Training and education 14,043
Working out 94,019
Others 1,356
Purpose Number of releases
Compassionate 8,411
Carer 664
Deaths 408
Family needs 551
Family occasions 34
Medical 5,816
Religious service 938