On 24 September, Frances Fitzgerald TD, Minister for Justice and Equality, launched the IASIO Biennial Report for 2013 and 2014. The report finds that IASIO has so far successfully assisted more than 14,000 offenders to access education, training, employment and resettlement support.
The average cost per placement is €965 rather than the €75,000 bill of having someone in prison. 45% of placements so far this year have been directly into employment with 54% going onto further training and education.
Since its establishment, SFA members have actively supported this programme, both in its previous incarnation as "The Linkage Programme" under Business in the Community (BITC) and now as IASIO, directly funded by the Irish Prison Service and the Probation Service. Many members have taken ex-offenders into their employment and have had a positive experience. We are continuing our organisational support and SFA Director, Patricia Callan, has joined the Board of IASIO as an essential link to small employers. The Minister and funding bodies have welcomed her appointment.
If you are interested in becoming involved in the programme, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or Tel: 01-6051602. For more information about IASIO, visit www.iasio.ie.