Press Contacts

Mark Fairhurst - National Chair:
Mobile 07968 108284

Steve Gillan – General Secretary:
Mobile 07971 838590

Mick Pimblett - Press Officer:
Mobile 07968 317 398

POA Press Office:
020 8803 0255 Option 7

POA Press Releases

202 25 Apr 2019


Leaders of the POA condemn HMPPS and Government.

The latest Safety in Custody Reports once again demonstrate that the prison service is in crisis and despite soundbites from Rory Stewart the facts speak for themselves.

The latest data is nothing short of shocking.

  • Self-inflicted deaths in custody, up by 18 to 317 in the year to March 19.
  • Self-Harm Incidents up 24.5% to the year end 2018 a staggering increase of 106% since 2010.
  • Hospital Attendances increased 4.8% to 3,214 an increase of more than 130% from 2010.
  • Assaults rose to almost 100 a day an increase of 16.1% and a rise of almost 140% from 2010.
  • Serious assaults average almost 11 a day a staggering increase of almost 200% from 2010.
  • Prisoner-on-prisoner assaults are averaging 67 a day with 8 of these serious and potentially life changing.
  • Assaults on Staff are now averaging 28 a day this has risen almost 300% from 2010 and the number of serious assaults on staff rising by 229.5% from 2010 all under the Conservative watch.

Steve Gillan General Secretary of the POA stated:

“The Government is failing in its duty to provide a safe working environment. Staff have the right to work in a safe environment currently HMPPS and Government are breaching their human rights.
HMPPS and Government claim that there are green shoots in reducing violence, debt, drugs and organised crime in prisons the year to end data does not support that claim.”


Mark Fairhurst POA National Chairman said;

“The Prisons Ministers statement that he would resign if his ten-prison pilot failed may have worked but this cost almost 100 million pounds.
The reality is that prisons are more violent, more dangerous and too many of my members are the subject to serious and life changing injuries.
Prisons need investment and a strategy to return order and discipline not sound bites that are simply smoke and mirrors.”


For further information, contact:
POA Press Office                                         020 8803 0255  Option 7