Issued 29/3/2012: 0730hrs no embargo
CONVERSE COMMENT: HMP WYMOTT
HMIP Inspection Report : published today – 29/3/2012
VIOLENCE AGAINST PRISONERS NOT TAKEN SERIOUSLY BY MANAGEMENT
On the whole a reasonably good report but there were serious shortcomings when it came to things such as self harm and suicides, no work had been done on diversity (which really means equality) and particularly with black and ethnic minority prisoners who remain isolated at the jail.
There was most seriously no real oversight of the use of force by prison staff – all these things taken together indicate that at Wymott there is a fundamental lack of respect for the treatment of prisoners, and respect for both prisoners and staff needs to be at the heart of what every prison does in the public’s name.
Mark Leech editor of Converse said: “
“Very few groups in our society have the legal power to use violence against others, the police are one and prison staff are another – we call it’ use of force’ but lets not pussy foot around we are talking here of lawful violence against an individual by agents of the State.
“The use of that force should not be taken lightly, when prison staff use violence to subdue a prisoner it is crucial that its use is documented, setting out what happened, by whom and why it happened – and that needs to be subject to management oversight which simply isn’t happening at Wymott.
‘Oversight reveals trends, which are vital, if those trends reveal that the same small group of prison officers are always the ones to use violence against prisoners then questions need to be asked why every other officer in the prison can get by each day without using violence towards prisoners but these few can’t – it could be hiding staff brutality and that is why it is vital management at Wymott get a grip on this and why it was right for the Chief Inspector to highlight the failure of the current Governor of Wymott to take it seriously.”
Converse is the highest circulation national newspaper for prisoners in England and Wales published by Spyhole Press, a wholly owned subsidiary of Prisons Org UK Ltd that publishes The Prisons Handbook, and operates the Law Society and Bar Standards Board accredited Institute of Prison Law.
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Mark Leech: firstname.lastname@example.org