Public Release: 

Upgrading electronic monitoring, downgrading probation

Reconfiguring 'offender management' in England and Wales


Under the Coalition Government which came to power in Britain in May 2010, major changes in the community supervision of offenders are underway in England and Wales. Under the new contract for electronic monitoring (EM) (the third since 1999), the government is planning a huge increase in the use of GPS tracking by 2015. Using GPS tracking could well come to be seen as a more reliable and credible way of 'doing' offender management. The government is planning to create the largest and most advanced electronic monitoring (EM) scheme in the world, using combined GPS tracking and radio frequency technology.

Using a mix of published and unpublished sources, discussions with some key players in these developments, (and a 'critical policy analysis' perspective), this article begins by documenting the post-2010 development of GPS tracking, and the emergence of strong police support for its large-scale use.


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