On 19th August 2020 the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) and Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service announced that the ECTR scheme was being paused ‘with releases being made until Thursday 27 August 2020’. PAS sought clarity from the MoJ on what this means in practice for prisoners eligible for release with either outstanding applications or those still waiting to make one.
The MoJ confirmed that all eligible applications already received were progressed and final cases submitted to the Minister for sight on Friday 21st August. No new applications will be considered and the final release under ECTR will take place on Thursday 27th August 2020. If an individual has not been informed of an outcome, and they are not due to be released under ECTR between now and 27th August, then their application is no longer being considered.
PAS has made enquiries on behalf of prisoners to ascertain the status of their application. However, the lack of public guidance and clarity surrounding the scheme has made it extremely difficult to advise prisoners at this distressing time.