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Custody stats

In the 12 months to September 2015 prisons in England and Wales saw 18,874 assault incidents, according to the latest Safety in Custody statistics.

That’s a rise of 19 per cent from the 15,886 incidents reported in the same period the year before. That was a rate of 220 assault incidents per 1,000 prisoners, up from 188 in the same period of 2014. Some 2,606 of those were classed as serious assaults, up 30pc on the same period of 2014.

The 14,247 reported prisoner on prisoner assaults were a rise of 15pc from 12,363 incidents in the same period of 2014.

Prison security features in the February 2016 print issue of Professional Security, given the rise in inmate use of so-called ‘legal highs’.

The prison officers’ union the POA said that it put Justice Secretary Michael Gove on ‘notice’; it invited him to put on a uniform, draw a set of keys, unlock violent and unpredictable prisoners high on undetectable drugs ‘and prepare to be assaulted, hospitalised, spat at and covered in excrement’.

Lord Falconer, Labour’s Shadow Justice Secretary, said: “The Government are in denial about the crisis in our prisons. The Tories have talked up a rehabilitation revolution since before they were in government but on their watch, deaths and self-harm incidents have soared, while serious assaults have more than doubled.

“It’s shameful and utterly unacceptable that prison staff should have to face this level of threat in the workplace. Prisons will never be effective in challenge re-offending behaviour and protecting victims of crime while this shocking level of violence continues. Ministers must urgently address the safety of prison staff and tackle the growing crisis in our prisons.”

For the statistics in full visit https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/495665/safety-in-custody-statistics-september-2015.pdf.


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