Prisons in the press – 26 June

 Pentonville prison slammed in damning report and Scotland reveals alternatives for women

Scotland leads the way, promoting alternatives to super prisons. Source: Rhys A, Flickr

Prisons in the press brings you the best articles from the past week to keep you up-to-date on prison news.

Hot off the press

1) Children who have spent time in care are over represented in the criminal justice system. The Prison reform trust launched an independent review this week to examine links between care and custody.

“There is a depressing route from care to custody which can, and must, be stopped. We need to listen to children in care about how they got drawn into trouble and hear their views on ways to get out of it.” Juliet Lyon Director of the Prison Reform Trust


2) Scotland leads the way with a progressive approach to female sentencing. A series of smaller prisons and increased emphasis on community sentencing will replace last year’s axed plans for a super prison. The Scotsman reports.

In context

The number of women in prison nearly trebled between 1993 and 2005 and most women ­are in prison for ­non-violent ­offences. Read our stats unlocked post here to find out more about the women in our prisons.

What are the alternatives to a rising female prison population? Catch up on last weeks Women in the Criminal Justice System conference, with our live blog here.



Revealed this week

1) A damning report finds Pentonville prison to be seriously failing. Violence, unsanitary conditions and easy access to drugs are just some of the criticisms found by inspectors. The Independent reports.


2) G4S and Serco, private security firms, face fraud charges for taking millions of pounds from the Ministry of Justice each month, more than a year after their tagging contracts were terminated. The Guardian investigates.



In other news

We know what goes on in our schools, hospitals and other public institutions. Why is it so hard to find out what is going on in our prisons? Eric Allison of the Guardian questions why the Ministry of Justice is so scared of journalists.

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