Source: (2003) The Journal of Community and Criminal Justice. 50(4): 369–373.

Martin Narey’s appointment as the Commissioner for Correctional Services is likely to have a profound effect on the development of the probation service over the next five years. His responsibilities in terms of oversight include: prisons, probation, the Parole Board and the National Youth Justice Board. The Criminal Justice Bill 2003 creates a range of new penalties including ‘Custody Plus’, ‘Custody Minus’ and intermittent custody. The overall effect will be more people imprisoned and a greater seamlessness between prison and probation. Given this process, the author considers that a drive towards an integrated correctional service in a third Labour administration appears likely. He argues that probation should remain separate from the prison service and regain its former identity with its key stakeholders, the local courts and local communities.