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Offender management and rehabilitation

Spice and psychoactive substances: a prison practitioner’s guide

Portrait of a woman with short hair, with her back to the camera.

Spice: Using what we’ve learned to keep you and your teams safe

“Anyone that works in a prison will know of the challenge created by rising use of Spice and other synthetic drugs. You may have come across people suffering from its effects, or you may have experienced its impact yourself when working on residential units.

“We certainly understand the challenge. Catch22’s teams work with young people and adults across 23 prisons. We work with thousands of people during their time in custody, from basic custody screening through to offender management and resettlement, support for veterans in custody, victim services, gangs work and youth justice.

“We believe in these people. We know that given the right support, many of them can go on to lead crime free lives and make a positive contribution to society. But to do this, we must ensure their time inside prison is purposeful and drug free.

“Spice use in prison has become more common over the last few years. This booklet – written by Max Rumley, Head of Service for the HMP Thameside Offender Management Unit (OMU), documents what our frontline teams have learned and observed, as well as the strategies they’ve implemented to support prisoners and keep themselves safe at work. It was written as a training guide for our people, but we think it could be useful for everyone working inside the custodial estate. We hope it helps you.”

– Lisa Smitherman Director of Social Justice and Rehabilitation

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