Many women are sent to prison, often for low-level summary offences, where the impact of incarceration has a catastrophic impact on them and their families.
The Minister also welcomed an additional £2.5m funding to further advance the Female Offending Strategy in England and Wales. The first Residential Women’s Centre in Wales will provide accommodation for vulnerable women with complex needs who would otherwise be sentenced to custody.
It will also aim to tackle the underlying causes of offending, such as substance misuse and mental health problems, and support women through the transition to life back in the community.
Jane Hutt said:
“I am delighted that the first residential centre will be coming to Wales. Welsh women need a safe and secure facility that is fit for purpose, while allowing them to maintain contact with their families, particularly children. The current Covid-19 outbreak has highlighted this even further.
“Welsh Gov has pressed hard for a new women’s residential centre in Wales and I’m delighted we’ve now received confirmation these plans will go ahead. This residential centre is a core part of the Female Offender Blueprint.
“I’ll be working closely with the MoJ and other key partners to agree timeframes, resource allocations and a suitable location for this new facility. I want to pay tribute to the excellent partnership we have enjoyed to date. We’ll continue to work together to achieve an effective model, appropriate to the needs of Wales.”