Political News Updates

18.01.2013

Union News: Government must stop playing Russian roulette with prisoners

The decision last week by Secretary of State Chris Grayling to announce the closure of six prisons and partial closure of three others is a recipe for disaster.

It is clear that National Offender Management Service (NOMS) and the Ministry of Justice have accepted institutional overcrowding of our prisons as the norm as they strive to save money and line the pockets of the private sector with new accommodation.

The lives of around a thousand families will now be turned upside down as they are forced to relocate or accept redundancies. Children will have to change school at a time when their education is at a critical stage but this uncaring government are simply not interested.

Overcrowded prisons have been the root cause of problems in the service and the transfer of around 2,500 prisoners as a result of this announcement may well have a catastrophic effect on the service.

The Secretary of State has stated that prison works and the POA agree with that statement but he must not be allowed to play Russian roulette with staff and prisoners safety in an attempt to save money.

The POA is prepared to look at the prison system to ensure we have safe, secure and decent prisons but the health and safety of our members is not for sale.

The POA will now ensure that we do all we can to support our members and their families as they come to terms with this devastating news.