Out of Sight, Out of Mind - RSA

Out of Sight, Out of Mind

Public talks


RSA House, London

  • Criminal justice
  • Prisons
  • Public services

After 25 years’ service as a prison governor and inspector, John Podmore provides an insider’s account of what is wrong with Britain’s prison service, and offers practical solutions for a better system. 


RSA Keynote

John Podmore has a passion for prisons; for over 25 years he has governed them, inspected them and fought corruption in them. His new book 'Out of Sight, Out of Mind' concludes that prison simply doesn’t work.

Hampered by political parties trying to out-tough each other on crime and shackled by a crushing bureaucracy, opportunities for rehabilitation are being squandered, and offending continues both inside and outside jail. Michael Howard could not be more wrong.

John Podmore believes that prison is necessary to protect the public from some, but that it should provide an opportunity to change the lives of many. Progress is hampered by public prejudice, political dogma and media hype. The result is that there is no real debate and a worsening problem that most people would rather ignore.

John Podmore visits the RSA to examine the most critical current issues and offer practical solutions for a better prison system.

Speaker: John Podmore has 25 years’ experience as a prisons inspector and governor and is the author of 'Out of Sight, Out of Mind' (Biteback, 2012).

Respondent: Nick Herbert MP, Minister of State for Policing and Criminal Justice.

Chair: Zoe Williams, columnist, The Guardian

See what people said on Twitter: #RSAprisons

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