Creative Justice blog series

Good Vibrations has worked in prisons and young offender institutions since 2003. We see the destructive effects on people of living within our overstretched, under-resourced criminal justice system. We want to understand how people can be better supported before, during and after their contact with the criminal justice system.  We have commissioned a series of blogs from a range of experts, including those with lived experience and their families. Every Thursday for the next four months, we will bring a different voice with their own unique perspective and ideas. At the end of the series we will publish a report drawing together the themes and recommendations.

Akin, former resident of a ‘foreign national’ prison, on the importance of knowing your rights

No. 11 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Akin spent the last two years of his criminal sentence in a ‘foreign national’ prison. He moved to the UK from Nigeria as a…

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Bruce Houlder, CB QC, on his work fighting knife crime in London

No. 10 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Author: Bruce Houlder, CB QC and Founder of Fighting Knife Crime London   It is Everyone’s Responsibility to help a Lost Generation of Young…

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Laura Caulfield, researcher, on the value of the arts in criminal justice

No. 10 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Author: Laura Caulfield, researcher in forensic psychology and criminal justice   This year marks my twentieth year working as a researcher in forensic psychology…

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BL, resident at HMP Stoke Heath, on the damage caused by labelling people

No. 9 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Author: BL, resident at HMP Stoke Heath. During the pandemic, we sent creativity packs to prisoners to use in their cells while they were…

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Russ Haynes, Good Vibrations past participant, on the importance of lived experience in prison reform

No. 8 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Author: Russ Haynes, radio show host and Good Vibrations past participant   I often wonder what the purpose of putting someone in prison is.…

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Alison Frater, Chair of Clean Break, on how women in prison have been let down and why the arts give her hope

No. 7 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Author: Alison Frater, Co-Chair of Clean Break   How do we halt the vicious cycle of crime? On the face of it a question…

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Chris Atkins, filmmaker, journalist and author, on the catastrophic impact of Covid-19 on prisons

No. 6 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Author: Chris Atkins, filmmaker, journalist and author   Most ex-jailbirds want to quickly forget their time behind bars, but I didn’t have that option.…

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Charlotte Wise, Occupational Therapist at HMP Stoke Heath, on the importance of looking at a person as a whole

No. 5 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Author: Charlotte Wise, Occupational Therapist based at HMP Stoke Heath   The role of an occupational therapist can vary depending on the area of…

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Sarah Hartley, Operational Lead for Creative Arts and Enrichment at Novus, on the arts, self-development and rehabilitation

No. 4 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Author: Sarah Hartley, Operational Lead for Creative Arts and Enrichment at Novus. Novus delivers education, rehabilitation support and opportunity to 60,000 adults and young…

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Laurence Rugg, Good Vibrations facilitator, on why compassion works better than punishment

No. 3 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Author: Laurence Rugg, Facilitator, Good Vibrations   “Punishment is the last and least effective instrument in the hands of the legislator for the prevention…

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Sara Lee, CEO of Irene Taylor Trust, on the power of the arts

No. 2 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Author: Sara Lee, Artistic Director, Irene Taylor Trust   “The purpose of arts education is not to produce more artists, though that is a…

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Dave Jeal, Chaplain, on what leads people to offend and the value of education in prison

No. 1 in our blog series exploring creative approaches to transforming the criminal justice system. Author: Dave Jeal, Chaplain   Can you tell us about your time working as a prison chaplain? I’ve been a chaplain for over 22…

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