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We value the distinctive role of partners across all sectors in helping us respond to the challenges we face and deliver better outcomes for those in our care, our communities, and Scotland as a whole.

The arrangements we have agreed, both locally and nationally, make a significant contribution to the work we do and the services we provide.

Our Partnerships

  • At a national level we work with justice partners such as Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS), Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS), Scottish Courts and Tribunal Service (SCTS) and Parole Scotland through the Justice Board and associated partnership arrangements.

    We also work with community justice partners through Community Justice Scotland, local government through engagement the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) and social work through Social Work Scotland.

    Within prisons, there are a number of partners who work to support people in and leaving our care including prison-based social work, housing, DWP and other welfare support services.

  • Geoamey

    We manage the contract for the Scotland-wide Court Custody and Prisoner Escorting Service for the provision of safe and secure transport for those in custody to and from courts, and appointments on behalf of multi-agency justice partners. Geoamey commenced operations in January 2019.

  • We value the distinctive role and contribution of the third sector. We are committed to working together effectively to maximise the impact of the limited resources available, make sure that those services being funded and delivered meet the needs of the people in our care, and minimise duplication between services.

    Charities and voluntary groups across a range of areas including addictions, recovery, mental health and wellbeing, provide invaluable support to people in custody.

  • The responsibility and accountability for the provision of health care services to prisoners transferred from the SPS to the National Health Service (NHS) in November 2011. Health care services in prisons are now provided by the respective local Health Boards.  As part of this transition drug, alcohol and mental health services, and prison health management information records also transferred from SPS to the NHS.

    The decision to transfer health services to NHS was taken in response to policies to reduce health inequalities and re-offending in Scotland as well as being in line with European and international standards for the healthcare of prisoners intended to ensure equity in healthcare.  Scottish Ministers approved the transfer in 2008 following a feasibility study in 2007. This was followed by the formation of a national programme board for prisoners’ healthcare in 2009 and the passing of the legislative amendments by Scottish Parliament in 2010.

    The NHS is a key partner of the SPS and work together through the National Prison Care Network and other joint prisons and health structures.

    The table below shows which health board has responsibility for each prison in Scotland.

    NHS Ayrshire and Arran

    HMP Kilmarnock

    NHS Dumfries and Galloway

    HMP Dumfries

    NHS Forth Valley

    HMP Glenochil

    HMP&YOI Polmont

    HMP Stirling

    NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde

    HMP Barlinnie

    HMP Greenock

    Lilias Centre

    HMP Low Moss

    NHS Grampian

    HMP Grampian

    NHS Highland

    HMP Inverness

    NHS Lanarkshire

    HMP Shotts

    NHS Lothian

    HMP Addiewell

    HMP Edinburgh

    NHS Tayside

    Bella Centre

    HMP Castle Huntly

    HMP Perth

  • Across all SPS sites the majority of learning provision is delivered via a contracted provider, Fife College. 

    Additional learning and developmental opportunities are also offered through vocational training within various work parties. 

    This provision allows for a curriculum to be delivered that is based on the needs of those in our care, including gender and age specific learning, trauma, brain injury or historic educational experience.

    Our approach comes from a belief that every interaction is an opportunity to learn, that people in custody have the potential to contribute positively to their communities and society, and that it is the responsibility of us and our partners to do all we can to help them achieve this.

  • We recognise that time in custody may represent an opportunity for people in our care to access meaningful and relevant training, education, and work opportunities. 

    Supporting and motivating individuals to engage provides opportunities for people in our care to develop skills and qualifications which will enhance their work readiness in preparation for release.

    Employability Partnerships

    We foster both local and national partnerships with statutory organisations and employers. These employability partnerships provide a model for external partners to host their training or work opportunities, within a prison environment. 

    Additionally, understanding the employment landscape allows us to consider how best to match opportunities within specific employment markets to training and development for those in our care.

    Through the Employability Partnerships models, we are inviting offers for partner led initiatives which will:

    • Provide a range of structured training and upskilling opportunities for those in our care;
    • Provide opportunities for those in our care to gain qualifications with external value;
    • Increase the employment prospects for those in our care; and
    • Be financially viable and sustainable.

    Community Placement

    We have a track record of providing resources to organisations for mutual benefit.

    The participation in a community work placement provides an opportunity for those in our care to utilise the skills that they have learnt to the benefit of the placement provider, whilst also expanding the individual's skillset and allows for the gradual reintroduction of those who have been in custody back into society in a measured and structured basis.

    If you feel that your organisation would be able to offer community placements to individuals within our care, please contact the Enterprise and Employability Team at [email protected]

    Production and Manufacture

    We have excellent production facilities in our establishments, and have a track record of producing quality products for wholesale or end-user. We also consider opportunities to be part of an organisation's supply chain. 

    For more information, please visit our Prison Industries page.

    Tel: 01501 773 979 
    Email: [email protected] 

    Prison Industries
  • Having somewhere to stay on release from a period of time in custody is key to successful reintegration into the community and is often the means to accessing other services.

    The Scottish Quality Standards for Housing Advice, Information and Support for people in custody or the Sustainable Housing on Release for Everyone (SHORE) Standards were originally developed collaboratively in 2017 by a working group led by the Scottish Prison Service and with representation from Scottish Government, Chartered Institute of Housing, Association of Local Authority Chief Housing Officers, Scottish Federation of Housing Associations, Shelter, Scotland’s Housing Network, Homelessness Action Scotland, Dundee City Council, Edinburgh City Council, South Lanarkshire Council and NHS. A number of organisations and groups were also consulted in the process and these are listed in the document which was first published in December 2017.

    The standards were developed to ensure that everyone has access to sustainable housing on release. In turn this will contribute towards the prevention of homelessness and reoffending. The standards and outcomes detailed in the document describe the processes and results which service users expect community justice partners to achieve.

    SHORE is now part of the homeless and community justice systems vocabulary in Scotland and while not fully embedded across the country, they are a common aspirational goal for Community Justice Partners and organisations. 

STIR Magazine

In partnership with Fife College, the multi-award winning STIR magazine aims to champion the artistic talents of people in prison and is the longest running creative arts project in SPS history, having been established in 2011.

Group of prisoners in the art room at Low Moss