Howard League Scotland 40th Anniversary Conference: Futures of Justice

This event is organised by Howard League Scotland 

HLS will be exploring new ideas and new directions for the future of criminal justice in Scotland – to stimulate new thinking about how we can work towards a better future.

We’ll be bringing together people from leading penal reform groups from across UK and Ireland, with our speakers sharing their bold ideas for penal reform, their vision of how we could improve our system of criminal justice, and setting out new directions for penal thought.


Professor Tony Platt: internationally renowned criminologist and author of Beyond These Walls: Rethinking Crime and Punishment in the United States, who continues to challenge our perceptions of crime by tracing its historical roots through the influences of class, race, gender and sexuality, which has resulted in America’s bloated criminal justice system and its disturbing use of incarceration.

Professor Nicola Lacey CBE: eminent criminal law theorist and School Professor of Law, Gender and Social Policy at the London School of Economics, whose research interests include the political economy of punishment; the development of ideas of criminal responsibility; and feminist analysis of law. Recent work has also included the role of criminal justice institution design in reducing stigmatism and blame.

Kevin Neary: Co-Founder of Aid & Abet, a charity which supports people involved in the criminal justice system in Edinburgh and Lothian, with a focus on those who have been in custody. Upholding the belief that once someone has been in prison they need never go back, he knows from experience that change is possible and that it’s never too late to start.

Wendy Sinclair-Gieben: appointed HM Chief Inspector of Prisons for Scotland in July 2018, from an ecletic background in criminology, education and healthcare management. Having also worked in Australia and Canada, she has a in-depth understanding of the complex elements which can lead to social marginalisation and exclusion, and has won recognition for her involvement in rehabilitation and reintegration.

Frances Crook OBE: Chief Executive of the Howard League for Penal Reform (England & Wales) since 1986, who has successfully campaigned to raise public concern about suicides in prison, the over-use of custody, poor conditions in prison, young people in trouble, and mothers in prison, amongst many other things. Believing that long prison sentences remove any hope of redemption, she fully supports investing in our communities in order to reduce crime.

We will also be joined by speakers from Community Justice Scotland, the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research (SCCJR), alongside members of the judiciary and practitioners.

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