Prison is a dead end, one that tears families and communities apart. However, the Government has announced plans to build 500 new prison places for women.
Building more prison places will only shatter more lives and unnecessarily separate families. We know 95% of children have to leave their home when their mother goes to prison, as women are often primary carers.
Under current plans, children will visit overnight in prison, rather than mothers being released to spend the night with their children. We cannot let this happen.
This flies in the face of the Government's own strategy which says that most women in prison do not need to be there.
There is another way, one that the Government knows works. We can invest in community-based services that support women to tackle the issues that sweep them into crime in the first place, like domestic abuse and poverty.
Together, we can #StopThe500 and ensure the Government does what's right for women, their children and our communities.