Clinks' work has a significant focus on government policy, both at a national and local level, with two aims:
• To keep members informed about, and engaged in, the development of criminal justice policy
• To ensure that the voluntary sector’s role, knowledge and expertise in reducing reoffending is reflected in policy decisions.
Our policy messages are based on what voluntary organisations working in the criminal justice system tell us. The voluntary sector’s extensive knowledge and experience informs the basis of all our policy positions.
In turn, the intelligence we gather from the sector is based on what they observe and what the people they support tell them about how policy and practice affects their lives.
Many of our members use this knowledge and intelligence to inform their own policy influencing activity. We work with the sector to support them to do this, and in partnership with them to strengthen their voice.
If you would like to contribute to our work to influence the government look out for our consultation events and calls for evidence in our Light Lunch ebulletin.
Advising the Ministry of Justice
Clinks chairs and provides the secretariat for the voluntary sector advisory group to the Ministry of Justice.
The Reducing Reoffending Third Sector Advisory Group (RR3) provides the key interface between the voluntary sector and the Ministry of Justice, in order to increase mutual understanding and build a strong and effective partnership. The group is made up of senior experts from the voluntary sector and meets quarterly with civil servants to provide guidance and feedback on MoJ policy developments. We’ve written a guide to the RR3, which gives more detail, its membership and key achievements. You can read the full terms of reference here.
To see the members of the Reducing Reoffending Third Sector Advisory Group, click here.
If you would like to discuss any specific areas of the RR3’s work, or how you can engage with the group’s activities, please contact Bronte Jack.
We publish the meeting notes of all RR3 meetings. You can also stay up-to-date with the activity of the RR3 by looking out for notes and announcements in Clinks’ Light Lunch ebulletin and monthly policy briefings. Click here to browse all of the RR3's publications.
Advisory group members
Visit our Meet the team page to see the members of the Reducing Reoffending Third Sector Advisory Group.
Join the advisory group
News about recruitment to the RR3 and to its special interest groups will be posted on Clinks’ Jobs board.
RR3 special interest groups
We develop special interest groups (SIG) to advise on specific areas of policy and practice as the need arises.
Special interest group on probation, April 2020 - present
This SIG provides a formal avenue to channel voluntary sector advice to HMPPS, ahead of and during the planned implementation of the reformed probation model. Read the latest notes from this special interest group here.
Special interest group on Covid-19, March 2020 – present
This SIG is looking at:
- What support the voluntary sector working in the criminal justice system needs to deliver now
- What support the sector needs to support sustainability post Covid-19
- Suggestions for support/changes for people in the criminal justice system
- Suggestions for support/changes for families of people in the criminal justice system.
Special interest group on employment support, February – June 2019
This SIG brought together employment specialist voluntary organisations for a one off roundtable to explore challenges and opportunities for the Ministry of Justice to improve the employment outcomes for people with convictions. Download the recommendations paper.
Special interest group on accommodation, December – April 2018
This SIG explored the barriers people in contact with the criminal justice system experience when trying to access appropriate accommodation and made recommendations for how these can be addressed. Download the group’s briefing to the Ministry of Justice
Special interest group on substance misuse and addiction - October 2017
This SIG was brought together for a one-off roundtable on 11th October 2017 to explore the issues facing voluntary organisations and service users in the substance misuse sector.
Special interest group on commissioning family services - 2016
This SIG was convened to offer an opportunity for organisations to work with HM Prison and Probation Service on the commissioning of family services for prisons. Download the group’s briefing to the Ministry of Justice.
Special interest group on people at risk of suicide and self-harm - 2016
This RR3 SIG met twice in 2016 to discuss how to provide effective care and support for people at risk of suicide and self-harm when entering prison, in prison and on release. Download the group’s briefing to the Ministry of Justice.
Special interest group on supporting effective mentoring through the gate - 2016
This SIG explored how to provide effective mentoring for men and women resettling in the community after a prison sentence. It considered the role and contribution of the voluntary sector in pioneering this approach and the impact of the current commissioning, contracting arrangements and funding on the voluntary sector’s ability to deliver effective mentoring. Download the group’s meeting notes.
Women’s networking forum
The women’s quarterly networking forums are hosted in partnership with Agenda. They provide support, information and networking opportunities to those working with women in contact with the criminal justice system.
Lisa Dando, women’s specialist on the RR3 and Chief Executive at Brighton Women’s Centre, attends the women’s networking forum and uses the intelligence she gathers to feedback key issues raised by the women’s sector to national government at RR3 meetings.
Latest on Twitter
.@hibiscuscharity have launched a report - funded by Clinks - which explores the complex issues faced by Black, minoritised and migrant women in contact with the CJS and the resulting impacts on their mental health.
Read the report here: https://hibiscusinitiatives.org.uk/media/2023/06/rmc-mental-health-report-document.pdf