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Non Executive Directorships

PAROLE BOARD – UP to 36 JUDICIAL MEMBERS

Location: England & Wales

Date Posted: 18/01/2019

Closing Date: 21/02/2019

Vacancy Description

This is what Judicial Parole Board members will be required to do, following their training:

  • Analyse and critically evaluate information in order to identify continuing risk/dangerousness in an individual offender’s case, where information may come from a variety of sources including electronic dossiers, electronic updates and evidence given at oral hearings
  • Apply knowledge and judgement to offenders’ cases in order to decide whether they can safely be released into the community and to set conditions where release is appropriate.
  • Assess cases when they are first referred to the Parole Board and set directions, where necessary, to ensure effective management of those cases that are sent to oral hearings.
  • Take an active part in oral hearings as a panel member, questioning witnesses as appropriate, weighing evidence to inform the panel’s assessment of risk. It is expected that members will progress towards becoming an accredited oral hearing panel chair once they have appropriate experience.
  • Work collaboratively with other panel members in order to make judgements about the available evidence and to provide a concise and structured summary of relevant factors in reaching a decision or recommendation.
  • Use Parole Board IT effectively to access electronic dossiers, draft reasoned summaries and decisions, to communicate with other panellists and executive staff, and to keep up-to-date with current case information, relevant developments and best practice guidance.
  • Be responsible for your own personal development by accessing training, guidance and information offered by the Parole Board and contributing positively wherever possible to the effective running of the organisation.
  • Carry out all casework for which you have been trained and accredited, keeping up your practice in these areas, whether carrying out work on paper panels, case management, oral hearings or any other casework.
  • Be an effective ambassador for the Parole Board when representing it at hearings or any other event.
  • Travel as required to the headquarters in London or Prisons throughout the country, or for other Parole
  • Board related events, with the occasional overnight stay.

Person Specification

Eligibility

 The Parole Board is aiming for a diverse membership and is positively encouraging applications from people with black and minority ethnic backgrounds.

For the retired Judicial Member role you must be:

  1. A retired High Court Judge; or
  2. A Circuit Judge, who retired in the three years preceding the closing date for applications (February 2019), or is currently serving and will be retired by September 2019.

You cannot be considered for the role of Parole Board member if you:

  • Have received a prison sentence or suspended prison sentence of three months or more in the last five years;
  • Had an earlier term of appointment on the Parole Board terminated, in certain circumstances.

Essential criteria

 These are the essential criteria and competencies that you will need to demonstrate during the recruitment process.

  • Demonstrable ability to conduct effective evidence-based decision making, weighing facts and evidence, analysing and critically evaluating large volumes of complex information and identifying key issues, within tight deadlines and working on your own initiative.
  • Demonstrable independence of mind and sound judgement, with the ability to make evidence based decisions that are accurately documented.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills: the ability to gain respect and maintain rapport through effective communication and influencing skills – with the confidence to challenge opinions where necessary, work collegiately and resolve differences to reach sound decisions.
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and oral: the ability to communicate sensitively and effectively with a wide range of individuals, varying your approach as necessary and treating others with respect, to listen actively and evaluate replies in order to probe issues.
  • Excellent written skills: the ability to draft well-formed written accounts which summarise evidence in support of a decision or recommendation.
  • Demonstrable high standards of corporate and personal integrity and conduct, such as a strong commitment to equal opportunities, and the ethos of supporting the wider public or community good through your contributions.
  • High levels of time management, organisational and administrative skills, together with strong personal motivation and commitment to professional self-development.
  • Evidence of an understanding of any aspect of the criminal justice system and the importance of victim perspective.

Additional Information

  • Members are appointed by Secretary of State for a five-year term with the possibility of re-appointment at the discretion of Ministers. Any re-appointment is subject to satisfactory performance appraisal. If re-appointed, the total time served in post will not exceed 10 years.
  • Attendance at Parole Board meetings – There is an expectation that members will attend training and development events organised by the Parole Board, and, where appropriate, contribute to the development of the organisation through consultation, pilot projects and non-casework activity, such as mentoring, training and quality assessment. Fees are payable for time spent on Parole Board business.

How to Apply

To make an application, please send:

  • A CV(maximum two sides of A4) detailing your qualifications, employment history and any appointments or offices you hold. Make sure this includes your preferred contact number and email address.
  • A supporting statement providing responses to the following three questions.
  • To be effective Parole Board Members have to assimilate relevant knowledge about, for example: sentencing law; probation, prison and psychology practice; factors that influence offending behaviour and desistance from crime. They also have to develop skills in, for example, analysing written and oral information; questioning prisoners and professionals; producing high quality documentation.
  • Please give an example of a situation where you had to learn, or develop, knowledge and skills in a new area to show why you are confident that you will be able to learn and be effective in this role.

2. Decisions about whether the risk of serious harm that a prisoner presents can be safely managed in the community are rarely straightforward. Parole Board Members may interpret evidence differently from other professionals, the public in general and sometimes from one another. In reaching a conclusion and making a decision, it is important that competing opinions are recognised.

Please give an example of a situation where you had to take a difficult decision when another person or people did not agree with you and explain how this was resolved.

3. Making sure that individuals get equality of outcome and fair treatment does not mean treating everyone the same. As public servants, Parole Board Members have to adhere to high standards but vary their approach according to the different needs in particular cases.

Please outline (1) why you think it is important that the Board has a membership which reflects the communities that it serves; and (2) the particular qualities that you have which you believe would be of greatest benefit to the Parole Board.

In your response to these questions, you should:

 Refer to the essential criteria and job description at Section 3. above

  • Limit your answers to 250 words for each of the three questions;
  • Be aware that you may draw on your personal life experiences as well as any voluntary or paid work experience;
  • Select your strongest examples, these do not need to involve the criminal justice system, we are looking for evidence of transferable knowledge, skills and qualities in the examples that you give;

 

When answering the first two questions, describe a situation you faced, outlining what you wanted to achieve in that situation, explaining the actions you took and analysing the extent to which you were successful and why;

  • Ensure your own role in the example is clear and that your answers are specific and tailored to cover the essential competency criteria that we are testing in each question:

 

Question 1: Analytical skills, Planning and organisational skills

Question 2: Analytical Skills, Communication Skills, Influencing Skills

Question 3: Integrity

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