So the listener service benefits those prisoners experiencing distress because they have someone to talk to who has an idea what it's like to be in prison, separated from family and friends. It benefits the prison service because they are having suicidal prisoners monitored in a cost effective way. It helps to rehabilitate offenders because they are learning and applying listening skills underpinned by empathy and compassion and one of the greatest challenges in the rehabilitation of offenders is making up for deficits in empathy and compassion. So rather than cutting the listeners service I would expand it: teaching as many prisoners as possible basic counselling skills, running prisons in more democratic ways, modelling constructive rather than aggressive ways of using power. This approach has been used in Therapeutic Communities and in institutions committed to the principles of restorative justice. It needs to operate across the whole prison - inmates and staff - and is an alternative to the power dynamics that currently rage in HM Prisons, where might is right and were it makes complete sense to remain emotionally detached and physically aggressive.