§ Ms Quin
[holding answer 3 March 1998]: The Review is being led by myself, in light of my ministerial responsibility for both services, and I am in regular touch with service representatives on this and other issues. I have appointed a Project Board to steer the work of the Review. The Board includes members of both services, and the two chief inspectors. The Board has so far met seven times. Since my right hon. Friend announced the Review on 16 July 1997, a variety of meetings have been held at which management and staff from both services have been briefed on progress and given opportunities to make their views known.
Twenty-five meetings have been held with Prison Service staff, at ten of which probation staff were also present; and five with probation committee chairs and chief probation officers. In addition, consultants who are assisting the Review on costing identified options have had a number of discussions with staff from both services.
As my right hon. Friend announced in July 1997, the main public consultation with all concerned will follow my consideration of the Review's examination of options for improving on present arrangements. There is no predetermined outcome; and my right hon. Friend and I shall take the views of all concerned into full account before we decide on the best way forward.