The Integrated Offender Management (IOM) is a comprehensive, collaborative approach to tackling crime and reoffending in the UK. It's designed to reduce crime and improve public safety by providing an integrated, coordinated response to those who offend.
This article explores the critical IOM elements and explains how it positively affects reducing crime and reoffending in England and Wales.
What Are the Key Elements of IOM?
The UK government developed IOM in response to evidence that traditional criminal justice approaches were inadequate in reducing reoffending. It seeks to bridge the gap between the criminal justice system and local communities by bringing together agencies from different sectors and disciplines to tackle crime and reduce reoffending.
The approach is made up of the following elements:
1. Early Intervention
This part of the programme involves the government and other organisations, such as the police, working with communities and local agencies to identify those at risk. By doing so, they can provide appropriate interventions and support to reduce their risk of reoffending.
A range of support services has been set up in recent years, all of which have contributed to reducing crime in England and Wales. Some of these include:
- Specialist Children's Services: One example is where child support agencies find extra financial support for young people who have been victims of domestic abuse. A study found that this support reduced offending rates from 25% to 7%.
- The Troubled Families Programme: This programme involves assigning a support worker to families whose children were statistically at risk of offending to help them make the most of local community and employment opportunities.
- Mental Health Support: Another approach involves helping parents with mental health issues develop a bond with their children can reduce neglect and crime later in life.
2. Targeted Interventions
Interventions can include cognitive behavioural therapy, drug and alcohol treatment, employment training, family counselling and other community-based activities.
The approach is based on partnership working and collaboration between agencies, with each agency contributing its expertise, experience and skills to the process. This ensures the interventions are tailored to the offender's needs.
An example of targeted intervention is The London Knife Crime Strategy. The plan commits to preventing young people from being drawn into gang crime through early intervention, school visits and employability training.
3. Monitoring and Evaluation
This element of the IOMP involves monitoring and evaluating the progress of offenders and the effectiveness of interventions. Organisations can use this information to refine interventions, identify areas for improvement and inform future policy decisions.
Monitoring of the IOMP includes collecting data to measure the programme's outcomes. These include the number of offenders successfully completing the programme, reductions in reoffending rates, and improvements in public safety.
The Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) estimates for the year ending June 2022, adults aged 16 years and over experienced 9.4 million offences. This was a significant decrease of 8% compared with the year ending March 2020.
These statistics highlight that the programme is effective. However, there's still work to do to ensure these numbers continue heading in the right direction.
The IOM programme will continue to play a vital role in reducing the rate of reoffending and the cost of criminal justice on the public purse. The programme has already seen considerable success in many countries and has the potential for it to be expanded and improved. Emerging technologies such as predictive analytics could be used to improve risk assessment accuracy and help target resources more effectively
Experienced Senior Marketing Executive with a history of working in the events industry. Marketing lead for Govnet Justice portfolio, Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Communication from Simon Fraser University.