The European Probation Rules, Assessment and Risk
This paper examines assessment practice in probation, especially in relation to risk, and considers the challenges posed to current approaches by the European Probation Rules, as well as by some findings from research. Focusing mainly on practice in England and Waleswhere much contemporary assessment practice is grounded in the principles of the Risk- Needs-Responsivity (RNR) model, the paper considers the strengths and limitations of the approach to assessment that RNR entails. It is argued that actuarialism, which RNR typically favours in relation to risk assessment, severs the crucial link between assessment and management and must therefore be complemented by other perspectives, notably insights from desistance research and the ‘Good Lives’ model. The importance of relationship, sometimes overlooked by RNR, must be reaffirmed. The predominance of risk in policy can jeopardise other ways of understanding the value of probation work and could turn out to be self-defeating.
Citation : Canton, R. (2014) The European Probation Rules, Assessment and Risk. EuroVista, 3 (2), pp. 68 – 80
Research Group : Community & Criminal Justice Research
Research Institute : Institute for Research in Criminology, Community, Education and Social Justice
Peer Reviewed : Yes