Political News Updates

13.05.2014

Prisoners

Nick Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) how many vulnerable prisoners are currently held in prisons in England and Wales; [197198]
(2) how many vulnerable prisoners are held in dedicated vulnerable prisoner accommodation. [197220]

Jeremy Wright: The term ‘vulnerable prisoner’ covers a wide range of prisoner types/characteristics but broadly these are those who need protection from themselves and other prisoners for a variety of reasons, including the nature of their offence, debt or conflicts outside or within the prison.

Our approach to managing these prisoners varies according to the nature of why they are deemed as vulnerable and is dependent on specific offending needs.

The number of prisoners in England and Wales who are identified as vulnerable is not held centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost as it would involve contacting every prison directly in order to request how many prisoners each prison has identified, or is managing, as a vulnerable prisoner.

All closed prisons in England and Wales have the facility to accommodate vulnerable prisoners in designated accommodation.

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what estimate he has made of the number of (a) men and (b) women in prison for committing an offence involving violence against the person where the victim was (i) male and (ii) female. [197797]

Jeremy Wright: There is a comprehensive range of offences dealing with violence against the person and the sentencing framework and sentencing guidelines apply equally to all offenders. Sentencing in individual cases is entirely a matter for the courts, taking account of all the circumstances of each case. This will include the seriousness of the offence, including all aggravating and mitigating factors, and a guilty plea. Defendants are now more likely to be convicted for committing crime and sent to prison for longer than they were a decade ago.

The information held within the prison population data is not available at sufficient enough detail to identify the gender of the victim. However, the figures in Table 1.2 of the latest offender management statistics,

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/offender-management-statistics-quarterly-october-december-2013-and-annual

show how many men and women are in prison by offence type.