Ian Birrell

The Tories are right to focus on prison reform – it’s a classic conservative issue

Many people were surprised when David Cameron placed prison reform at the heart of his party conference speech last week. His passionate words on the subject of state failure when it comes to incarceration put the issue firmly at the heart of his reawakened vision of compassionate conservatism. It is now at the core of the Conservative party’s bid to seize the centre ground after Labour’s refusal to accept the verdict of the voters. 

Hopefully this marks a significant moment, when the debate on crime and punishment shifts from the ‘sterile lock em up’ stance to a more rational and evidence-based...

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