Ex-offenders benefit from Government initiative

The Government's Linkage initiative has placed 792 ex-offenders in jobs, education or training since it was established three years ago, according to the group's latest annual report.

The Government's Linkage initiative has placed 792 ex-offenders in jobs, education or training since it was established three years ago, according to the group's latest annual report.

Linkage, which is part-funded by the business community, was established by the Probation and Welfare Service in 2000 to steer offenders away from crime by offering them the opportunity of jobs or education.

Spokesman Pat Lynch said: "In the last 12 months, we have placed 315 clients who have been referred to us by the Probation and Welfare Service.

"160 of these went into employment and 155 went into training.

"68 of those were prisoners who have completed their sentences and the others were people who had been referred by the courts to the Probation and Welfare Service."

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