Crowded jails `ready to blow'
Wednesday 26 February 1997
David Evans, general secretary, of the 27,000 strong Prison Officers' Association, has written to Richard Tilt, director-general of the Prison Service, to express his concern about the security and safety of jails in England and Wales. He says the crisis has been heightened by a dramatic increase in the jail population to a record 60,000.
Mr Tilt has agreed to discuss the issue next week and has set up a special meeting next month to examine the problems caused by over-crowding.
Mr Evans wrote to Mr Tilt last week on behalf of the POA's National Executive Committee to express "their anxiety and concerns over the increasing prisoner population.
"We are seeking an urgent meeting with you to discuss this issue as it impacts greatly not only on the penal estate but on the safety and security of everyone working within penal institutions and indeed, the general public."
The committee's warning follows the publication of a POA report earlier this week which claimed security at Broadmoor special hospital is at "breaking point". The report was sent to Stephen Dorrell, the Secretary of State for Health.
The Prison Service is trying to gain permission to moor a floating jail off Portland, Dorset, and convert a former Pontin's holiday camp, near Morecambe Bay, Lancashire, into a make-shift prison, to ease the crisis. Mr Evans added the Prison Service had shed 900 staff last year: "Now they are having to launch a massive recruitment programme. That's a crazy kind of management."
He warned there was a growing sense of unease in many prisons. "It has become a powder keg that could blow at any time and place".
A Prison Service spokeswoman, said: "The director- general has taken the letter seriously and has agreed to meet and discuss the issue."
Exclusive: World’s most pristine waters are polluted by US Navy human waste
Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Any terrorist seizure of the plane ‘would have required one hell of a piece of planning’
Croatia's second city to close 'worst zoo in the world' after reports of 'nightmare' conditions and 'depressed' animals
Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Hijackers, pirates or suicide – the theories surrounding the mystery
Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 Q&A by Simon Calder: How far could it have travelled? Who was responsible and what would their plans be? And how can a plane just vanish?
Katie Hopkins continues campaign to become Britain's most hated talking head with poorly timed Bob Crow tweet
No EU referendum under Labour: Ed Miliband to reveal that vote on membership is ‘unlikely’ in next Parliament if party wins power
Grace Dent: Who cares if she spells it Barraco Barner? Gemma Worrall is more employable than some bookish arts graduate
The rise of Ukip: Study warns Labour that Eurosceptic party's electoral base now 'more working class than any of the main parties'
Europeans have ‘got whiter’ due to natural selection in past 5,000 years, scientists say
Fracking is turning the US into a bigger oil producer than Saudi Arabia
- 1 Is your name now 'banned' in Saudi Arabia?
- 2 Exclusive: World’s most pristine waters are polluted by US Navy human waste
- 3 Nemanja Matic interview: My family were in tears when we left Lisbon
- 4 Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Jet ‘hijacking’ began soon after take-off
- 5 'Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 plane found in Bermuda Triangle!' Viral Facebook links are profiting hackers
£50000 - £60000 per annum: Charter Selection: This well respected and exciting...
£40000 - £50000 per annum: Charter Selection: This exciting company and market...
£40000 - £60000 per annum + EXCELLENT SALARY: Austen Lloyd: Senior Private Cli...
£25,000 to £35,000: IT Connections Ltd: Signal Processing Engineer / Acoustics...