This study has produced evidence of the impact of housing on recidivism and quantified that impact.


Mark EllisonChris Fox, Adrian Gaines, Gary Pollock


Established in 2007, Vision Housing is a small London-based specialist housing provider working primarily with ex-offenders. This study seeks to evaluate the impact of Vision Housing’s provision of housing and support on re-offending rates. The evaluation design compared expected re-offending rates after one year calculated using offender group reconviction scale (OGRS3) with actual reoffending rates after one year based on data from the police national computer (PNC). “Re-offending” was defined in line with the current Ministry of Justice definition based on “proven re-offending”. The predicted rate of proven re-offending for 400 clients referred to Vision over 12 months was 40.7 per cent. Their actual proven re-offending rate over 12 months was 37.0 per cent. This is 3.7 percentage points less than the predicted proven re-offending rate, equivalent to a 9.1 per cent reduction in proven re-offending. This result was statistically significant. Analysis also suggested that Vision Housing is more successful with women; offenders under the age of 35; offenders referred by the Prison and Probation Service; offenders with a higher predicted risk of proven re-offending; and offenders who had committed more serious offences. The evaluation conducted to date does not include a comparison group and therefore has relatively low levels of internal validity. The authors are not aware of any UK studies of the impact of housing on re-offending that have successfully used a more methodologically robust evaluation design. Until such studies are carried out, the results of the current study should be of great interest to policy-makers and those delivering rehabilitative services to ex-offenders in partnership with third sector organisations. This study has produced evidence of the impact of housing on recidivism and quantified that impact.

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