Empty our prisons but pay for the consequences

From the Observer

I have been arguing that the prison system is a malignant failure for so long I can remember denouncing it when Ken Clarke was last home secretary. The case is worth repeating however, because a heatwave brings unusual squalor. The glare of the sunlight reveals the state’s indifference to the men and women under its charge.

If you believe the more excitable conservative papers, we live in a country tyrannised by health and safety fanatics. Yet the supposed jobsworths at the Ministry of Justice treat the rules governing the humane treatment of offenders with contempt as they pack convicts into jails which are already over capacity.
carry on reading

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13 thoughts on “Empty our prisons but pay for the consequences

  1. How can people overlook the need to breathe?
    J.A.G Griffith, who died in May of this year, wrote a book called Politics of the Judiciary, isn’t that about what was going on during the Tory years?

  2. “Airless rooms”? Really? Well, if your claim is true, there will be no overcrowding problem in , oh, about 4 or 5 minutes, and I expect to read the headlines of mass asphyxiation tomorrow. That, or you’re stretching the truth to the point of deformity, in which case one needs to ask: what else are you fabricating?

  3. air·less (ârls)
    adj.
    1. Having no air.
    2. Lacking fresh air; stuffy.
    3. Lacking movement of air; still.

    Is English not your first language?

  4. Ah, I see. So you’re point then is: these poor souls must endure stuffiness. Oh, the inhumanity.

  5. !”Is English not your first language?

    Is this a slightly racist comment.
    Also many of your fellow right wing columnists keep using the phrase
    “It’s a holiday camp in prison”
    I do wish the right would be consistent.

  6. Erm no if someone accuses you of lying the nicest thing you can do is say, well, perhaps you do not understand the language I’m using otherwise you would not make such a fool of yourself in public

  7. And when you’ve finished correcting them Nick can you catch that guy on the loose who’s probably going to start shooting people soon. Can you get to him first before the police and the army and calm him down. Also, there’s a hosepipe ban in Cumbria; can you fill up a few reservoirs…take a bucket and get cracking. And anything else that is nothing to do with you can you do to keep people happy. Ta

  8. Erm no if someone accuses you of lying the nicest thing you can do is say, well, perhaps you do not understand the language I’m using otherwise you would not make such a fool of yourself in public
    Er, I think he was taking the piss , not accusing you of lying.

  9. Oh for god’s sake! Nick’s points about the prisons are excellent, knowledgable and timely.

    If you can’t make an informed comment why not go to some of the very many forums for hot air, or try improving your written English, which I note Nick was too polite to bring to your attention, perhaps in the interest of saving your face.

    Before you further indulge your ignorance, why not go to some of the web sites to find facts rather than prejudice, eg the Prison Reform Trust site which does not hide its real views or tell lies to promote them.

  10. Nick’s article is timely, to the point and accurate.

    I am dismayed at the mean-spirited nature of most of these comments. Why not find out some facts before airing your prejudices? I recommend the Prison Reform Trust website – they don’t disguise their views but they don’t lie and they do present a lot of facts.

    I think that stuffy rooms or cells are the least of prisoners’ problems. We the taxpayers are forking out a fortune for futile and extortionate punishment for people way past their actual sentences, for absolutely no logical reason. Try reading the (literate) blog at Ben’s Prison Blog to get a flavour of what it’s like to be a human being in a UK prison with virtually no hope of release.

    Why can’t we be more like enlightened Western Europe than the US? For further reading and more facts, try the very approachable lecture on Management of Prisoners by Andrew Coyle on line at King’s College London.

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