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The University of Southampton
Southampton Law School

Dr Harry Annison interviewed on BBC Radio 4

Published: 10 February 2017

On Monday 6 February, Dr Harry Annison, Lecturer in Criminal Law and Criminology, appeared on the BBC Radio 4 show, ‘How Not to Do It’, part of the Analysis series.

During the interview, Dr Annison was asked about his research, ‘Dangerous Politics’ which considered the creation, and later abolishment of the IPP (Indeterminate sentences for public protection) sentence, and what ideas were in play during the process. The show also featured Jacqui Smith, former Labour home secretary, and her investigation into why government policies fail.

Indeterminate sentences for public protection (IPPs) were devised by David Blunkett and the Home Office to reassure voters that those convicted of serious violent and sexual offences would stay in prison until they could show by their changed behaviour that they could safely be released.

However, much larger numbers of offenders received the sentences than had been expected and jails struggled to provide the facilities IPP prisoners needed to show that they had reformed.

The new sentencing structure, first passed in 2003, had to be drastically changed by Labour in 2008 and was repealed by the coalition four years after that. Jacqui considered the difficult legacy of IPPs - for those still in prison and for politicians devising new initiatives in other fields of government.

You can view Dr Harry Annison’s research on IPP’s here .

You can listen to the show on BBC iPlayer here .

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