Thousands of police officers who have died or been killed in the line of duty were honoured at today’s annual National Police Memorial Day service, held at the Waterfront Hall in Belfast.
One of the facilitators for social enterprise Beyond Recovery staged his second solo art exhibition in the Noho Studios, Fitzrovia, London, recently. Artist Paul Lock featured incredible portraits of three of the men with whom Beyond Recovery has worked in prison and have since been released. Now Beyond Recovery apprentices, the men attended a private viewing of the exhibition – ‘You Simply Are II’ – on 24th September along with family and friends, including the Beyond Recovery team.
Prisons, courts and police stations have been given the opportunity to engage more collaboratively with the construction sector thanks to a major new procurement agreement which will help shape public sector construction.
All public sector bodies can use Crown Commercial Service’s (CCS) Construction Works and Associated Services agreement to find companies to help build things like new schools, hospitals, office buildings, universities, prisons, and houses. It has a maximum potential value of £30bn over the next seven years.
Following the Prime Minister’s announcements about prisons in mid-August, the Prison Reform Trust wrote three letters seeking clarification:
- to the Permanent Secretary, Richard Heaton, about the sentencing review
- to the Secretary of State, Robert Buckland, about the £2.5bn for new prisons, and
- to the CEO of HMPPS, Jo Farrar, about the extra £100m for prison security
To their collective credit, they have replied only three weeks later, and with some detail. Their replies can be found at these links:
Inevitably, only some of our questions have been answered, and it pays to look closely.
Commenting on the findings of HM Inspectorate of Prisons’ Independent Review of Progress report on HMP Bedford published today (12 September 2019), Peter Dawson, director of the Prison Reform Trust said:
“It is no surprise that the prisons which most consistently fail to deliver decent, safe conditions are overcrowded, very often with prisoners on remand or serving pointless short sentences. Bedford, a 200 year old pre-Victorian prison, is just one of many examples. If it is serious about ending this scandal, the government must start by quitting its addiction to imprisonment.”
Commenting on the findings of the HM Inspectorate of Prisons report on HMP Forest Bank, Peter Dawson, director of the Prison Reform Trust said:
“This report sums up the futility of the Prime Minister’s idea that you can build your way out of the prisons crisis. Forest Bank is a modern prison with a solid history of good local management. But 60% of the prisoners it holds are in overcrowded cells with half of them locked up during the working day. Unsurprisingly, violence and self-harm are common. It’s a similar story in other new prisons built over the last two decades, as the political addiction to imprisonment continually outstrips the willingness to provide the number of cells it requires.”
Commenting on the findings of the HM Inspectorate of Prisons report on HMP/YOI Swinfen Hall, Alex Hewson, Senior Policy and Communications Officer at the Prison Reform Trust said:
“This report highlights a fundamental challenge for the prison service—that an attempt to improve safety in one establishment simply leads to instability in another. Reducing the pressure on heavily criticised HMYOI Aylesbury by sending young men to Swinfen Hall just led to a predictable spike in violence there instead. With young adults over-represented in incidents of self-harm, segregation and poor behaviour, and many hundreds of young men now routinely sentenced to astonishingly punitive jail terms, the Chief Inspector is right to call for a specific focus on this age group. A young adult strategy, as recommended by the cross-party Justice Committee, is long overdue.”
CNL Software, a world leader in Physical Security Information Management (PSIM) software, is pleased to announce that its IPSecurityCenter PSIM solution has won the Convergence & Integrated Software and Solutions award in the 2019 New Product of the Year Awards by Security Today.
The Security Today New Product of the Year Award honors the outstanding product development achievements of security equipment manufacturers whose products are considered to be particularly noteworthy in their ability to improve security. Nearly 100 entries were received in the 11th successful year of the independently juried contest.
Commenting on the findings of the HM Inspectorate of Prisons report on HMP Eastwood Park, Dr Jenny Earle, Prison Reform Trust lead for reducing women’s imprisonment said:
“The cause of at least some of Eastwood Park prison’s failings lie outside its walls in the lack of housing and mental health support for women in the community. It is shocking that inspectors found that more than two in five women were being released homeless
RESULTS OF 10 PRISONS PROJECT
Commenting on the publication of the results from the 10 prisons project by the Ministry of Justice today, Peter Dawson, director of the Prison Reform Trust said:
“Any reduction in violence in any prison is welcome. But the 10 prisons project and the fate of a prisons minister always risked being a distraction from the real issue facing the government. That is about overcrowding—still running at over 20% despite three decades of prison building. It has always been possible to yank a very poor prison back from the abyss for a while, but the strategic problem of prisons holding too many people has never been properly addressed. Any glimmers of systemic improvement will be quickly snuffed out if we return to the failed ‘prison works’ policies that have created this calamity in the first place.”