Financial Difficulties on Release from Prison

summary:

What are prisoners' financial needs on release from prison ?

What parts do employment, state benefits and informal family support play in the first few weeks after release ?

What do recently released prisoners know about their entitlement to social security benefits ?


Are there any improvements that could be made to the system ?

With nearly 60,000 people currently in prison in England and Wales, the financial needs of prisoners on release is a major issue. Many people leaving prison have no immediate source of income, and in the majority of cases the Prison Service provides only a small discharge grant to tide them over until their first benefit payments are made.

This report is based on a series of interviews with male prisoners, both before and just after their release. It asks how well the discharge grant works, and assesses the extent to which it succeeds in meeting the immediate financial needs of people released from custody.