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Prison Social Work at Addiewell Prison


The Prison Social Work team is employed by West Lothian Council to provide a social work service to prisoners in HMP Addiewell (new window) who will be subject to statutory supervision on release.

Who can get a service?

Depending on the length of sentence, and also on particular circumstances, a prisoner may be allocated a prison-based Social Worker. Prisoners with the following sentences will be provided with a service:

- Supervised Release Order (SRO)
- Long Term Sentence (4 or more years)
- Extended Sentence
- Life Sentence
- Order of Lifelong Restriction (OLR)

We will also work with any prisoner in the following special categories:
- Sex Offenders
- Schedule 1 Offenders (people who have offended against children
- Recalled prisoners

How do Prison Social Workers help prisoners?

We will work to address offending behaviour and prepare prisoners for a successful return to the community. Prison-based Social Workers are legally required to meet with prisoners to assess their needs. This is in order to:
- Support them with their prison sentence
- Work towards their release
- Provide support and involvement to help the reduction of offending
- Protect the public from harm.

The Social Worker will talk with prisoners, to find out more about them and their situation.  This will include information about family contacts, planned accommodation, health, offending behaviour, risk factors and what help prisoners can be offered, both before and after release. We aim to assist in prisoners making positive changes to their lifestyle and behaviour.

Prison Social Workers attend and contribute to Integrated Case Management meetings (ICMs) and are involved in release planning.  As part of this, they prepare reports as required for the Parole Board, and have regular contact with community-based Social Workers and other resources.

With whom do prison-based Social Workers share information?

All information and behaviour that relates to a prisoner's past offending or that places a prisoner at risk of committing further offences may be shared with other prison staff, community-based social work, and the Parole Board.  We may also share some information with agencies that may work with prisoners after their release from prison. 

We are also duty-bound to pass on any information that we receive which could indicate that a prisoner is a potential risk of harm to him/herself or to others.

Social work information about a prisoner is held in a file that is kept within the prison. This is transferred with the prisoner if there is a move to another prison. 

Prisoners without an allocated Prison Social Worker.

Any other prisoner has the right to request voluntary assistance from the local Criminal Justice Team in the council area where they live. This service aims to help people settle back into the community, to work with them on the issues that led to their offending, and to manage their risk to the community. 

How to see a prison-based Social Worker.

Prisoners who have been allocated a prison-based Social Worker will automatically be offered an appointment. For newly sentenced prisoners this should normally be within 5 working days.

Other prisoners can meet a social worker through the duty social work service. In order to do this, the prisoner should complete a referral form, which is available from prison officers on the wing.  The referral form highlights the issues that the Prison Social Work Team can help prisoners with.


Social Work Unit, HMP ADDIEWELL

9 Station Road, Addiewell, West Lothian EH55 4QF

Tel:  01506 874566     Fax:  01506 874563



Updated: 22/12/11