Yet again I have handed the blog reins over! Today Pete, from Positive Prisons? Positive Futures speaks about the change he has seen over the recent years.
“It has been inspirational to witness the rise of the Freedom Bakery from idea to remarkable reality. Here at PP?PF we like quite a few things – fairness, justice, innovation, respect, resilience, bicycles, cheese, vans, commitment, dependability and coffee. The Freedom Bakery, as we see it, scores highly in all of these areas apart, perhaps, from cheese… Working in the same office space as Matt we have been well placed to see some of the highs, lows, struggles, successes and smiles that have been encountered and enjoyed along the way to put the Freedom Bakery in the unique position it has established as a social enterprise operating an artisan bakery inside a Scottish prison. A few years ago this would have been regarded as impossible.
We like impossible, especially when it is little more than a convenient veneer to mask a reluctance to share responsibility and opportunity with people seen as ‘others’ not ‘us’. It presents a challenge to overcome partly because of its inherent unfairness but mainly because it is, quite literally, unreasonable and without justification unless one considers it right to deny another human being some of the opportunities you take for granted for yourself.
PP?PF has enjoyed overcoming the impossible too… Who would have thought a few years ago that people who have been subject to punishment would participate in Scottish government boards, steering groups and committees on matters relating to justice redesign? Now that the voice of the lived experience of punishment is recognised and respected at local and national government level many more opportunities come into view. The recent past has seem some great steps forward for the Freedom Bakery and for us – the scary bit is that, from my point of view, this is just the beginning of even greater change. Look out! The best is yet to come!”
Pete works with Positive Prisons? Positive Futures to improve the effectiveness of Scotland’s criminal justice system