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New facility to enhance offender rehabilitation

Wednesday, 21 August 2019

A new residential community support and supervision facility for offenders is to open this autumn.

The Community Rehabilitation Centre will be run directly by the Isle of Man Probation Service and will offer an expanded programme of focused rehabilitation work designed to reduce offending and protect the public.

Tromode House replaces the bail hostel at David Gray House which is owned by the Salvation Army and has been operated by them in partnership with the Probation Service since 1994. A smooth transition to the new site has been carefully planned to ensure no gap in provision.

The new arrangements have been agreed between Government and its partners at the Salvation Army following lengthy consultation. David Gray House requires extensive maintenance work and the charity is to decommission the probation hostel after the transition on 30 September.  

Assistant Territorial Director of Homelessness Services North Malcolm Page said:

‘We would like to thank our dedicated staff team who fully engaged with the process and understood the final outcomes to close the service. We will make every effort to redeploy our staff teams to other vacancies within our organisation.’

He added:

'We’ve enjoyed a positive relationship with the Isle of Man Prison and Probation Service over recent years and worked closely together. We wish them well with the new service, which will have a different focus from the current provision. We will continue this close partnership as we progress towards a closure of David Gray House, ensuring an effective handover and transition to the new service for the residents.’

Tromode House, a government-owned property previously used as a children’s home, has been refurbished to accommodate 12 residents. The facility comprises a lounge, bathrooms, kitchens and catering facilities alongside meeting rooms and office space. It will provide a semi-secure and supportive environment for offenders on Court Orders operating in the community, those on bail awaiting sentence and ex-offenders following their release from prison on Licence to the Probation Service.

Home Affairs Minister Bill Malarkey said:

‘Keeping the Island a safe place to live, work and visit has been at the forefront of our thinking. Our new approach will ensure offenders have an appropriate place to live whilst under supervision or reintegrating back into the community. Tromode House lent itself to conversion to provide suitable accommodation for offenders, negating the need to build a costly new facility.

He added:

‘Providing a replacement was driven by a number of factors, among them a pressing need to increase bed spaces to fulfil a commitment in the Criminal Justice Strategy to keep more prisoners from custodial sentences and better support them before sentence and on release. I would like to thank the Salvation Army for their tireless and dedicated work over the past 25 years.'

Tromode House will operate a structured regime designed to address offending behaviour and support rehabilitation into the community, the aim being to help people reintegrate into and contribute to society.  

Residents will be subject to an overnight curfew and Probation Management will deal with any failures to comply with the Centre’s rules robustly. This can mean re-calling offenders subject to Licence back to prison or returning those in breach of their Community Orders back to the courts.

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