Performances exploring Desistance Theory

Throughout the year we have been delivering interactive performances for criminal justice professionals around recent research on how and why individuals desist from crime.

This research prioritises the importance to ex-offenders of hope and of embracing a non-criminal identity, which allows them to feel that they are productive members of society. It also suggests that professionals who work with those individuals need to support them on an individual journey to desistance rather a ‘one size fits all’ set of processes.  The emphasis for these performances has been dependent on the make-up of our audiences and has ranged from a broad focus on desistance for multi-agency audiences to a more specific focus on how probation staff can support desistance at a time of radical change for the service itself. Our audiences have responded strongly to the experiences of our fictional characters, whether it be an ex-offender trying to find new roles as a parent, a son or an employee, or a Probation Officer trying to hold on to their core values whilst negotiating organisational change and uncertainty.