Wormwood Scrubs Prison Officers Assaulted – ‘Wrong but inevitable’ says one expert.

wormwood192Two prison officers have been taken to hospital following an assault at Wormwood Scrubs prison, which one expert commentator described as ‘wrong but inevitable’.

The attack took place at the west London jail just one day after staff returned to work following a demonstration over health and safety concerns.

They were taken to hospital for treatment and the attacker was placed in segregation, the Ministry of Justice confirmed.

A police investigation will be launched and the general secretary of the Prison Officers’ Association (POA) said there was “clearly an issue” at the facility which needed to be addressed.

A Ministry of Justice spokeswoman said: “Following an incident at HMP Wormwood Scrubs on Sunday May 8 two members of staff were taken to hospital for treatment.

“We do not tolerate violence against our hard-working officers. The perpetrator has been placed in segregation and will face a police investigation which could lead to criminal charges.”

A number of officers gathered outside the prison on Friday to raise concerns over the number of assaults by inmates in recent months.

The temporary walk-out came weeks after an inspection report sparked claims of Dickensian squalor at the jail – one of the most famous in Britain.

POA general secretary Steve Gillan said: “We know there was an assault on two prison officers that involved hospital treatment.

“Clearly there is a growing issue there and we hope we can work with the local management to resolve it.”

Mark Leech, editor of The Prisons Handbook for England and Wales said ‘it was wrong but inevitable.’

“When Wormwood Scrubs staff walked out and prisoners were confined to their cells, seeing their work, education and visits from loved ones cancelled, the problems were never going to be in keeping the prisoners locked up, it was inevitable there would be problems when they were opened up again.

“No prison officer should face being assaulted, assaults are wrong, they have the right to come to work and go home having worked in a safe and healthy environment.

“The POA need to teach their members that solutions to the difficult situations they face, the serious, dangerous, issues they have to confront on a daily basis, will never to be found outside the gate of Wormwood Scrubs, but rather on the other side of it, sitting around a table and resolving the issues.’

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