Politicians 'point scoring' on crime, says Archbishop

Click to follow
The Independent Online

The archbishop of Canterbury called the Government's penal policy "scandalous" yesterday.

The archbishop of Canterbury called the Government's penal policy "scandalous" yesterday.

Dr Rowan Williams also accused the three main political parties of "point scoring" and trying to out tough each other in criminal justice policy.

He launched his attack during a debate on restorative justice at the Church of England's General Synod in York.

Bishops, clergy and the laity meeting for the Synod were discussing alternatives to imprisonment and argued that prison should be a last resort.

The Archbishop criticise the Government for overseeing a massive rise in the prison population, the locking up of women and children and the privatisation of prisons.

Over the past 15 years, the prison population has nearly doubled to 76,000 today.

Programmes of rehabilitation and education are frustrated by the mobility of the prison populations as a consequence of overcrowding," he said.