Colson program booted from UK’s Dartmoor prison
Chuck Colson’s InnerChange prison program was booted out recently from the UK Dartmoor prison, because it might convince some that that the Christian faith is the right faith.
Colson, widely remembered from the Nixon Watergate scandal, has forwarded evangelical Christianity among prison cultures in America for decades.
The program has shown great success in diminishing crime and recidivism among prisoners, the Telegraph said.
A similar program was launched in 2005 in the UK’s Dartmoor prison with the support of then governor Claudia Sturt. It involved 10 prisoners who joined voluntarily.
Included was aftercare for all participants whether or not they became Christian, the Telegraph said.
Last year Sturt was promoted and sent to Belmarsh. InnerChange was then mysteriously accredited under PSO4350—for schemes that involve public funds. InnerChange never sought this accreditation and raised its own funds, the Telegraph said.
Then an Area Psychologist of the Prison Service observed InnerChange and reported displeasure that they believed “the root of offending is individual sin.” She said the statement lacks scientific basis, the Telegraph said.
She also said the concept of good and evil is “antisocial” and did not like the fact that those who ran the program believed that their faith is the right faith, the Telegraph said.
Supporters of InnerChange have noted that many Muslims are offended by the idea that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. However, they questioned whether this meant that no Christian could say it, the Telegraph said.
InnerChange has met with great success in the United States. In Texas, among those who joined the program recidivism dropped from 55 percent to eight percent. In Minnesota, Commissioner Joan Fabian of the Department of Corrections noted, “It is one of the best things that we’ve done in our system. [It] is just the right one when nothing else worked,” the Telegraph said.
The course cites Biblical role models and parables such as the Prodigal Son and the Lost Sheep. It also provides follow ups after prisoners are released from prison, the Telegraph said.