Posts Tagged ‘Politeness’

More focus on manners and politeness is needed

November 9, 2009

I think that this applies across the board but I had the honour and pleasure of representing the Council last Thursday at the Official opening of the new Heron Wing at the Feltham Young Offenders Institution.  There was genuine excitement about the potential and it is an excitement that I share.  As the Mayor, Boris Johnson, got across schemes like this make sense both financially and for everyone in society.  I was also impressed with the speech given by Jack Straw MP.  It got me thinking about whether he is an example of a politician who comes across much better in the flesh than on television.

I disgress…

I visited a number of stands that had been set up for Guests.  I also read some of the literature and criteria that is considered for agreeing to an application for early release.  All sensible stuff and whilst there is an explicit reference to good behaviour, there is none to good manners.  The two are not always the same.  I am guessing that Good Behaviour could be down, for example, to an Offender not showing any violence or aggression towards others.  Of course, good behaviour is critical but taking a view on how an Offender being released will interact and speak with others is surely critical also.

They have a difficult job to do at FYO with most being on remand.  Notwithstanding that, they do their very best to enhance Skill Set of the Offenders whilst they are in their care.

I doubt that anyone would disagree that there is a better chance of these Offenders re-offending when there has been an investment in Skills Training with/on/in some of these young men.  I think that this Popular Consensus is established.

Would anyone disagree that there is a better chance of re-offending not happening when these young men have demonstrated that they understand the importance of being polite?  I would hope that every Offender leaves our Institutions in the future understanding that “Good Morning”, “Please”, “Thank you”, “Excuse Me” etc are necessary when interacting with others.

Good Manners and politeness are certainly under played these days.  Both need to be more explicit in policies of the next Government.