64 pages

the National Newspaper for Prisoners A ‘not for profit’ publication / ISSN 1743-7342 / Issue No. 150 / December 2011 62,000 paper copies distributed monthly plus over 100,000 monthly online readership / www.insidetime.org

- including 8 page Short Story Supplement

‘Mince pies a security risk!’ Your letters pages 2-9

150th Issue

Season’s Greetings to all our readers

IPP Sentence: ‘An obscenity and stain on our reputation’ An Inside Time report:

T

he government should conduct a CENSUS of all indeterminate sentence prisoners and all determinate sentence prisoners to establish why any of them are over tariff, what is required of each of them to qualify for release and what plans, if any, have been made to ensure that they are able to do so. Lord Ramsbotham (pictured), a former Chief Inspector of Prisons, told the House of Lords during the Second Reading of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offender’s Bill (on November 21) that the task would have been easier to undertake if it had been started years ago. The IPP sentence is, he said, “an obscenity and stain on our reputation for civilised behaviour.”

the Criminal Justice System has broken down over the past 18 years because prisons have been choked with ever-increasing numbers who do not need expensive imprisonment. Lord Ramsbotham told Peers that he strongly supported the Rehabilitation Revolution and applauded the Secretary of State’s decision to end IPP sentences but the necessary structures or management were not in place to ensure that it could succeed. Today’s incoherent prison population management system prevents continuity of treatment.

There is no-one responsible or accountable for the different types of prisoner, other than high security. And no consistency of treatment in prisons of the same type. Imagine the outcry if acute hospitals in the NHS were run in the same way, he said. Former Lord Chief Justice Lord Woolf (pictured) added; “We have a deplorable situation in our prisons today, where thousands of prisoners who might be able to safely return to the community cannot because unfortunately the Parole Board is not in a position to deal with

their cases due to the resources available to it. There is nothing in the Bill about that.”

Crime, Punishment and the Media The Tenth Annual Longford Lecture

delivered by broadcaster Jon Snow on November 17th

I just want us to think outside our box where we see people in cells and where we see crime in court, and where we see all sorts of mechanisms for work in the community. I want us to widen out and think, ‘Hang on a minute, have we got it right?’

The avalanche of confusing legislation and torrents of wishful thought and undeliverable ideas, not least the expensive introduction of the so-called National Offender Management Service (NOMS), have allowed Ministers and their officials to be led astray. Just as the healthcare system would break down if hospitals were choked with people who did not need that level of treatment, so

Photo courtesy The Independent

Month by Month pages 16-17 An extract from the lecture page 21

Video Link available

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If you would like to contribute to Mailbag, please send your letters to ‘Mailbag’, Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB.

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the national newspaper for prisoners published by Inside Time Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of The New Bridge Foundation, founded in 1956 to create links between the offender and the community.

I would like readers of Inside Time to know that I have just had a complaint upheld by the Ombudsman that involved staff here at HMP Belmarsh redacting their names and some content from wing history sheets or any information under the Data Protection Act. In a Comp 1a response from the Performance Management Unit at Belmarsh it stated ‘Our legal advisors have informed us that in certain circumstances we are permitted to disclose restricted documents - with relevant information redacted’. This is strange because the very same person at the PMU told the Ombudsman (when contacted by him during the ensuing investigation) that she had received advice from the Offender Management team at NOMS HQ saying ‘Staff names should not be redacted unless leaving them in would give rise to a security issue’. This woman clearly knew she was talking utter nonsense in her original reply to my Comp 1a form. The Data Access & Compliance Unit states ‘Staff names in Category A prisoners records should be withheld only in exceptional circumstances’.

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Inside Time is wholly responsible for its editorial content. Comments or complaints should be directed to the Managing Editor and not to New Bridge.

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Trevor Grove - Former Editor Sunday Telegraph, Journalist, Writer and serving Magistrate. John Carter - Former international healthcare company Vice-President. Geoff Hughes - Former Governor, Belmarsh prison. Eric McGraw - Former Director, New Bridge (1986-2002) and founder of Inside Time in 1990. John D Roberts - Former Company Chairman and Managing Director employing ex-offenders. Louise Shorter - Former producer, BBC Rough Justice programme. © © alistair aH. e. Smith B.Sc F.C.A. - Chartered a Accountant, New Bridge not Trustee and Treasurer, not profit profit Foundation. publication service Chris Thomas - Chief Executive, New Bridge Foundation.

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................................................ Colin Gunn - HMP Belmarsh

I know that prison staff up and down the country must hate the thought of us being able to actually see who has written what about us, and will try, with the help of their own litigation

office, to tell us we are not entitled to see names and redacted information but this is 100% wrong. I hope this will be of help to others who wish to apply for their wing history sheet or other information held on them redaction free. The Ombudsman case number is 45359/2010, just in case you need to quote it. Editorial note: Some time ago (June 2011), we received this letter for publication and decided it might well benefit from a comment from someone at NOMS. We received no reply from NOMS. Since querying the non-reply we have been told that it was ‘Marked CX by NOMS High Security Prisons Group as offensive and provocative’. We then asked the Ombudsman’s office for a comment and they wrote: ‘Thank you for your email asking if the Prisons and Probation Ombudsman wished to comment on Mr Gunn’s letter. The PPO has made a determination on this case, further comment is now for NOMS - Elizabeth Moody - Deputy Ombudsman’. Inside Time is informed that Prison Service staff are not considered by the Information Commissioner or the courts to be “third parties.” Their names or identifying information, when recorded in a professional capacity, are only exempt when there is a reasonable expectation that “bodily safety or even life itself are put at risk” through disclosure.

What planet are they on? Forget the junkies, ................................................... feed me! Mark Watling - HMP Woodhill

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Rachel Billington Novelist and Journalist

John Roberts Operations Director and Company Secretary

Eric McGraw Author and Managing Editor

Noel Smith Writer and former prisoner

Editorial Assistants Lucy Forde - Former prisoner education mentor Paul Sullivan - Former prisoner

Administration Assistant: Sonia Miah Layout and Design Colin Matthews - [email protected]

So the government intend to take up to £25 per week off people on benefits to pay for any criminal behaviour? Let’s start with the fact that all benefits are calculated to the last penny as the minimum amount of money that people need to live on, so let’s look at what this idiotic move will really mean. It will personally hand anyone who is even slightly of criminal intent the reason and need to commit even more criminal offences in order to get the money to live on. The person or persons who are advising this idiotic government on these matters should be sacked for providing a perfect formula to create more crime, more victims and more expense for this country. Just watch out for the tidal wave of burglary, shoplifting, drug dealing and theft that will result from this latest piece of lunatic legislation. What planet are these people living on?

Lee Wookey - HMP Winchester It would appear that the bulk of prison budgets is being spent on Methadone and other drugs for the junkie army in our jails. I can’t help wondering if this is why, 9 times out of 10, my meals are not big enough to fill up my 5 year-old daughter, let alone me! Surely the system needs to address this problem of short rations, or let us spend more on canteen. But, then again, why should we have to pay for food out of our own pockets? Isn’t there a duty to provide us with enough food whilst we are being held prisoner? It does seem that lately, everything in prison is being cut to the bone. For example, I’ve been waiting over a month for an appointment with the mental health team. I have complained but I didn’t even get a response. Maybe they are trying to save on ink and paper. What a messed up system we are being forced to endure.

Correspondence Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB. Accounts & Admin: Inside Time, P.O.Box 251, Hedge End, Hampshire SO30 4XJ. 0844 335 6483 / 01489 795945 0844 335 6484 [email protected] www.insidetime.org If you wish to reproduce or publish any of the content from in Inside Time, you should first contact us for written permission. Full terms & conditions can be found on the website.

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Mince pies a security risk!

................................................... Dave E Ferguson - HMP Wakefield I read with interest the interview with Nick Hardwick (HMCIP) in your November issue. Particularly his comments on what he feels constitutes a positive regime that is conducive to rehabilitation. So, when are you coming to Wakefield Mr Hardwick? The default answer to any request or complaint is ‘No. Security issues’. At the time of writing we have today been told, at a canteen meeting, that we cannot have mince pies this Christmas because they are a ‘security risk’! Please stop laughing, this is not a joke. I only wish it were. Here at HMP Wakefield such nonsense has become the daily norm. Nor is the management here willing to expand on the ‘security risk’ default setting. To do so would mean they would actually have to find justifiable reasons for their actions. I agree with Mr Hardwick in respect of education playing an important role in prison regimes, unfortunately HMP Wakefield does not agree. After 3 years of constant brick walls constructed by Wakefield’s Head of Learning and Skills, myself and another prisoner had to resort to costly and needless court action to access appropriate education for our needs. But despite winning our Judicial Review, Wakefield has still done absolutely nothing to facilitate our educational needs. And, yes, they used the phrase ‘Security issues’ to deny us the right to education. Every single failing that Mr Hardwick says he sees as an obstruction to a prisoner progressing positively towards successful rehabilitation can be found as part of the regime enforced by HMP Wakefield’s archaic management team. Enough of us here have written to Mr Hardwick listing our concerns. So, to finish, I repeat when are you coming to HMP Wakefield?

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Violent conditions breed violent people

Star Letter of the Month Congratulations to Richard Tunstall - HMP Frankland who wins the £25 cash prize for this month’s Star Letter

................................................... AJ Reid - HMP Frankland

ment as an adult before coming to prison.

The Shawshank Redemption

The forgotten prisoners

................................................... Richard Tunstall - HMP Frankland I was locked up in 1996, as a juvenile, for burglary, but whilst in prison I committed many violent acts, culminating in the death of a defenceless old man in HMP Full Sutton in 2005. Though I deserved a lot more, I received an IPP sentence with a 3 year, 4 month tariff, and a 5 year tariff for other violent acts. It took me quite a while to come to terms with what I had done. I now see that the sentence I received was my last chance to change my life for the better. However, on reading various pieces of Ministry of Justice literature I discovered that there is no truly in-depth resettlement programme. Everything currently in use is focused on people who have had at least a few years of social and emotional develop-

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At first I thought it might be because there are not that many people who have been incarcerated since they were juveniles. I then discovered 4 people that I know of on my wing alone who have been inside since they were kids. Off the top of my head I can name another 12 who I have met over the years. I asked a member of staff, well … told him, of my concerns and he agreed with me that there should be some programme in place for people like me. He phoned the NOMS clerk and told her of my concerns. The NOMS clerk agreed with the officer and expressed surprise that there is nothing in place to effectively ‘de-programme’ longserving prisoners who have been locked up since they were juveniles. In the grand scheme of things it might seem only a minor concern to most people, but I haven’t got a clue about how to live and survive outside of the prison environment. I can barely string two sentences together (verbally) without swearing, and my guts churn to think of what I may go through on release. I don’t want to end up like Brooks in the film The Shawshank Redemption, too scared to get out, only to kill himself after release because he could not cope with the outside world. I just thought I’d put mine, and others, concerns in writing, in the hope that some organisation somewhere might be able to help us.

‘40 Attacks a Day as Jail Violence Soars’ was the headline in The Sun ‘newspaper’ not long ago. The article suggests that such an increase is a result of prison overcrowding. However, I beg to differ. I’m sure that overcrowding does play a small part but there are other explanations that have been ignored or overlooked by the media. Firstly it turns out that 1 in 5 of those attacks is against prison staff. This clearly demonstrates the need for a vast improvement in prisoner/staff relations. We have all heard the phrase that ‘for every action there is a reaction’. In these cases the reaction was an assault, but what was the action of prison staff to provoke such a reaction? Also, in the last few years prisons have received the shit end of the stick as far as budget cuts are concerned, and we all know that is only going to get worse. Living conditions and facilities have gone seriously downhill - the size of food portions is now a joke. Prisoners pay has become an almost laughable slave wage, whilst canteen prices continue to rise. On top of all this, progression through the system has become harder than ever owing to the lack of courses and spaces on them. There also seems to be a general lack of motivation by the MoJ, NOMS, Probation, etc, which contributes to creating a hostile environment and results in an increase in violence. So let’s not just blame everything on overcrowding, there is a deeper malaise in the prison system.

Mailbag

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Contents Mailbag ........................... pages 2-9 Newsround ................... pages 10-15 Diary ......................... pages 16-17 Comment ................... pages 18-30 Psychology ......................... page 31 Thoughts for the Day ............ page 32 PSI Updates .......................... page 33 Family Welfare ............ pages 34-35 News from the House .... pages 36-37 Legal Comment .......... pages 38-40 Legal Advice ........................ page 41 Legal Q&A ................... pages 42-43 Health ........................ pages 44-45 Wellbeing ................... pages 46-47 Book Reviews and Art ..... pages 48-49

A Surprising Absence of Scandal page 18

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The Koestler Exhibition: Scotland 2011 ...................................................... page 49

Inside Poetry ............... pages 50-51 Jailbreak ..................... pages 52-55

Sec. 2, 3, 37, 37/41,47/49,48/49 & C.T.O. Appeals etc

National Prison Radio .......... page 56 helping people to live crime-free lives

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> looking ahead • January Inside Poetry supplement

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Mailbag

No courses for IPPs ‘Warbled shriek!’ ................................................... ................................................... Mark Watling - HMP Woodhill

David Thomas - HMP Acklington

Having recently been demeaned by a member of staff with what can only be described as a warbled shriek usually heard coming from creatures deep in the jungles of Madagascar; I wonder if there are any human rights or prison laws to make sure that we are spoken to humanely and as adults. On the whole, 19 out of 20 staff are as good as gold but there is always the odd one who feels the need to display their dominance over prisoners. We may be prisoners but most of us respond to a human voice. And some staff would do well to remember the old adage – empty vessels make the most noise.

I am sure all IPP prisoners are now aware that the fundamental issue with the sentence is lack of availability of courses to allow risk reduction for parole reviews.

Credit where it’s due

.................................................................................................... Michael Boylan - HMP Castle Huntly (Scotland) Anybody who has read my letters published in Inside Time will know that I do not hold back in my criticism of the British prison system, and I hope you will bear that in mind when reading this letter. I have recently been transferred from HMP Kilmarnock to HMP Castle Huntly open and have been genuinely surprised and impressed by what I have found. There is a feeling of positivity here that is lacking in the closed prisons. An infectious belief that prisoners can be trusted and their future has not been decided by their past offending. The psychology team here are realistic and approachable, probation seem to look for the positive things rather than ‘risk factors’ all the time. The whole place seems to be about helping prisoners prepare for release. It is unfortunate that Castle Huntly is the only remaining open prison in Scotland as I feel there are a great many prisoners remaining in the grim, filthy warehouse prisons that make up the majority of the system that would benefit from a structure like this. I do not have the relative comparable reoffending figures but I would bet my last shekel that the difference is significant. Castle Huntly shows what can be done, what can be achieved with a little courage, motivated staff and a positive attitude.

The Legal Services Commission (LSC) claim they have a ‘massive backlog’ when it comes to awarding funding to seek Judicial Review to resolve such matters. I have had a request for funding outstanding for nine months and many IPP prisoners are experiencing the same. So the situation remains that there is a breach of public law duty by the UK government for failing to comply with PSO4700 and PSI 36/2010, but IPP prisoners are unable to do anything about it. I decided to write to Inside Time and let others know what I have done about it. You will all remember the cases of (James & Others), LEE v Secretary of State for Justice (2009) UKHL 22. They claimed that as they had not been given access to courses before their parole reviews, this was in fact a breach of Article 5(1) and 5(4) as their reviews had been a meaningless exercise. The House of Lords rejected their claims, but they successfully lodged their cases with the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in 2009. As I am a post tariff IPP prisoner and have received a parole ‘knock back’ in the same circumstances, I decided to follow suit and lodge my own case with the ECHR (but without the aid of a solicitor as I cannot get funding). The key thing was to supply all the evidence in terms of paperwork (e.g. OASys documents, sentence plans, Comp 1s, Solicitor’s letters, Parole Board letters, letters from the Ministry of Justice) to support my case. To lodge a case with the ECHR you have to either exhaust the UK court system or show that it would be ineffective to do so. Thanks to the UKHL22 ruling I said that it would be ineffective for me to use the UK courts as they had already rejected the above cases. I also provided letters as evidence of the issues with the LSC. By referencing the LEE v UK case [57877/09] already accepted by the ECHR this also added additional support to my own case.

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The remedy I sought under article 13 was an immediate injection of £70 million from the UK government to provide courses for IPP prisoners. I made a point of stating that there

are now more than 3,500 post tariff IPP prisoners due to these issues. My case is now lodged with the ECHR and they are going to review it on paper. I hope this letter gives some hope to IPP prisoners who are caught up in this mess. If you want to write to the ECHR the address is: The Registrar, European Court of Human Rights, Council of Europe, F-67075, Strasbourg, CEDEX. Remember to use a European stamp! (Available on canteen sheet).

About Turn

................................................... Name Supplied - HMP Hewell Well, well, imagine my wry smile when at the end of October I heard our incumbent Minister of Justice, the affable Kenneth Clarke, announce the long overdue demise of the IPP sentence. Imagine too how refreshing it was to hear him candidly admit the inherent injustice of the sentence, not to mention him stating how difficult it is for any prisoner to demonstrate to the Parole Board his/her risk can be safely managed in the community. Ken, I applaud you and for me to applaud a politician is as rare as hen’s teeth! It was also announced that a second similar fact serious offence will attract a mandatory life sentence. So turning the clock back somewhat to the days of the automatic life sentence which yours truly is the subject of; currently serving year twelve of a six year tariff for offences of robbery. Whatever my plight, this missive is not to complain and bemoan my situation, it is what it is. Sentencing policy by its nature is a vexed issue and I am compelled to acknowledge those who devise and revise it are on a hiding to nothing. Difficult to best serve justice and appease the whip ‘em and hang ‘em brigade and laissez-faire liberals at the same time. Politicians are concerned and motivated by their individual and collective desire for power, to be re-elected. An original view maybe, but the truth of them as I perceive them. The about turn Kenneth Clarke has announced re the IPP sentence has as much to do with political expediency as it does with the injustice of it and the virtual impossibility of its competent management. Better late than never I suppose and fair do’s to Kenneth insofar as he is less myopic than certain of his predecessors. Besides which, any guy who enjoys a whisky and a cigar scores a point or two from me, nice one Ken!

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Whatever happened to human rights? Veteran’s Court in the UK ................................................................................................... .................................................................................................. Steve Diamond - HMP Exeter I am writing this letter to let you know that Exeter Remand Prison in Devon is treating a lot of their prisoners like animals and are breaching our human rights. We are meant to be on Rule 45 (own protection) but because D-wing is full they have got us on B-wing mixed with the prisoners that we fear. On a daily basis we are getting cleaning products through the hatch, we are getting urine chucked under the door, we are being made to live in fear of our lives and it is very distressing. The prisoners on B-wing are coming to the door a good four or five times a day threatening us - calling us paedo’s, rapists and grasses. A lot of us on the Rule don’t even want to come out of our cells as we are too scared in case we get hurt. It is mentally affecting our living and health. When we tell the guards they just turn a blind eye. The other day some bloke cut himself on the Rule because it got that bad and it took approximately 16-18 minutes for a guard to show after the buzzer had been pressed. We are banged up 23 hours a day. We do not get association and because we are on Rule 45 we get told we are not allowed to work. So the people that want to work can’t. How do they expect us to live on £2 a week? The prisoners that serve the food are under-feeding the prisoners on Rule 45. God knows what else they are doing to the food. We get half hour exercise and on gym days they do exercise the same time. We are getting three days clothes and sometimes they’re not even clean. For domestic visits we get thirty minutes and when we ask for shampoo and razors we get told there aren’t any. There are a couple of us who don’t even have pillows. Last week, me and a friend got put on basic for going and spending too long in the toilet speaking to each other while we were sat in our cells. A mate of mine has been on basic for eighteen days without a review. We are given no radio and have asked to see a member of the IMB. They’re meant to review you after seven days, it’s now been eleven days and I’ve still had no review. I don’t know how long we can take this for. Our canteen orders are messed about with. Please reply ASAP to this letter as complaints forms and mail are going missing.

Writes

Frances Crook - Director, The Howard League for Penal Reform

Paul Lanham - Briefing & Casework Unit Mr Diamond raised a number of matters, which are personal issues and should be addressed through the local complaints system within Exeter prison. I will comment on the broader issues raised by Mr Diamond. He is concerned that prisoners normally separated from the general population under Prison Rule 45 for their own protection are sometimes mixed with the general population. D wing in Exeter prison is a unit dedicated to housing vulnerable prisoners. The prisoners on this wing have open association, work and education placements daily and thirty minutes exercise. There is limited capacity for vulnerable prisoners in D wing and once this wing is full other vacant spaces within Exeter are used until placed on D wing become available. Mr Diamond complains that Rule 45 prisoners are locked up for more hours than the general population of the prison and that they do not have sufficient access to association, exercise and clothing. There is no record of vulnerable prisoners complaining about these matters or any complaints in the last three months about items thrown through hatches or food concerns with the exception of one made by Mr Diamond in October. Given the vulnerability of the prisoners located on D wing, they are expected to follow and abide by the rules and regulations of the wing, including those for the night sanitation system. Those who do not behave or abide by the rules of the wing will be disciplined in the same way as prisoners on normal location.

I was glad to read the article ‘Is there a need for a specialist Veteran’s Court in the UK’ [November 2011] in Inside Time (pictured). The treatment of veterans by the criminal justice system has long been a concern of mine, which is why I commissioned our two year Inquiry into former armed service personnel in prison. The Inquiry produced many recommendations for change, for example the expansion of the current free Veterans Helpline provided by the Service Personnel and Veterans Agency.   The authors of the article were right to point out that we didn’t support the introduction of veterans’ courts in the UK. This was for many reasons. One being that the criminal justice system should take into account mitigating factors and particular needs when sentencing for everybody, including veterans.  Just as a pregnant woman should be sentenced according to the fact she is pregnant, so a judge should sentence a veteran taking any issues such as

previous good conduct or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) into account.   During our trip to the USA we discovered veterans’ courts in America are primarily mental health courts geared to deal with PTSD. Our study noted a large difference in reported PTSD rates between the US and UK, with UK estimates at 4 percent and US estimates at around 20 percent. While PTSD is a condition that does affect a large number of service leavers, we found no evidence that PTSD can be directly linked to offending behaviour in the UK.   The American veterans’ courts only deal with non-violent offenders. One in four veterans in prison in England have committed sex offences, and one in 10 are violent offenders, and many are in for long sentences. A significant number of our veterans would not qualify for entry into the veterans’ courts.   Finally, we found no link between military service and offending and that military service can have a positive impact on people’s lives. The army in particular recruits people with socially deprived and economically disadvantaged backgrounds shared by many in the criminal justice system. And it is those shared stories of social exclusion, alcohol misuse and financial problems that should be taken into account by all judges for all people.

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6

of the most basic human right to freedom.

Imprisoned without charge? ................................................... Bilal Zaheer Ahmad - Hmp Belmarsh Since the 5th of August 2004, British citizen Babar Ahmad has been languishing in prison and is currently the longest serving British detainee-without-charge, having reached over 7 years imprisonment fighting extradition. Since his arrest he has been through a terrible ordeal. During his arrest, he was viciously assaulted by his arresting officers from the Territorial Support Group which saw the Metropolitan Police pay out £60,000 in damages. Those arresting officers recent trial for assault saw MI5 surveillance recordings used as evidence to prosecute police officers for the very first time, yet somehow the jury still acquitted them - despite the Met’s admission of guilt by paying £60k in damages. The fact of the matter is that one of our own citizens has been imprisoned for over half a decade without having been charged with any offence under British Law - simply because of a request for extradition by a foreign country (i.e. the United States) alleging he fund-raised for terrorism and encouraged terrorism on a website. The fact that this British citizen has been held in British prisons without having being charged for any offences under British law is a travesty of injustice and a blatant breach

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There is scheduled to be a review of the UK-US extradition treaty next year, precisely to prevent any reoccurrence of the quagmire Babar Ahmad finds himself in. It should also be duly noted that Babar Ahmad has always maintained his innocence, but, if for argument’s sake he was convicted of “fundraising for terrorism” (contrary to section 15 of the Terrorism Act 2006), then case authorities on these offences clearly suggest that he would have served his time - and then some. When will the British government stop violating the basic right to freedom of British Citizens and kowtowing to the Americans? Response from Carl Buckley - Stevens Solicitors Ahmad is sought for supporting acts of terrorism in the 1990s which he has consistently denied.  Under the Extradition Act 2003 he is prevented from challenging the evidence, or lack thereof, against him.  His final appeal is to be heard shortly by the Judges of the European Court of Human Rights.  It is with great concern that he has no effective opportunity to challenge his custody.  In a serious matter such as this, despite being detained for 6 days and released without charge in the UK, he has been denied an effective opportunity to assert his innocence in the British Courts, or to be released on bail pending extradition, and is likely to be sent to the US for trial where he is likely to receive a life sentence in a maximum security prison. It is not an exaggeration that this risks amounting to a flagrant denial of justice that the British Courts have disregarded. It is particularly noteworthy, that over 100 leading members of the legal profession have lobbied for a public debate on his case. It is also of note that he is not seeking discharge, instead he is seeking to stand trial in the UK where he believes he will be afforded an opportunity to establish his innocence through a fair trial.

Your help would be appreciated

.................................................................................................... John Mervyn Jones - HMP & YOI Moorland I am writing in desperation and seeking your help. In May 2011 the Yorkshire and Humberside Region of the Prison Service introduced a pilot complaints scheme which was designed to streamline the original scheme as set out in PSO 2510. One of the main features of the pilot is that it cuts down the number of appeal stages. Unfortunately no one seems to have advised The Prisons and Probation Ombudsman of this and they have been routinely rejecting applications because the ‘correct’ procedure has not been complied with.

give up and not bother anymore. Your help would be appreciated. Maybe you could check the existence of the pilot system and validate its effect on the protocols of the complaint procedure: It would also be interesting to know if the pilot scheme is to be adopted and rolled out nationwide or abandoned. One further thing I hope you can help me with, a situation that PSO 2510 does not seem to address is what steps can be taken when an appeal to a complaint is not responded to? Should an extra complaint be submitted or should the appeal be resubmitted?

I have submitted an application (copy enclosed) to the prison authorities requesting that this anomaly be addressed but have had no response.

I imagine given the attitude of the Ombudsman they shouldn’t want to get involved until the proper process is completed and so it’s a stalemate.

I wrote to the Ombudsman on the 21st October 2011 (copy enclosed) and explained in detail what I perceived the problem was and so far I have not received any acknowledgement. I am aware though that they are currently inundated with work and not performing as promptly as they should do. Nevertheless this is causing submissions to the Ombudsman to be perfunctorily rejected and as I stated in my letter, many people will

Editorial note: In a statement to Inside Time the Ombudsman’s Office said; ‘Mr Jones is in one of the prisons taking part in the pilot of a two-stage complaints process. He was originally told that his complaints could not be considered by the PPO until he had completed all three stages of the internal complaints process. He queried this with us and we have already apologised and accepted that we made a mistake in this case.”

Robbery without a gun!

.................................................................................................... J Dillon - HMP Whatton In response to the Mailbags by Kathy Taylor and Ian Dickens (October issue – ‘Duvet rip-off’) I would like to tell you how I am being ripped-off by the system. I was in a Cat B prison where, as an Enhanced prisoner I was allowed to purchase a digi-box and use it. I was then recategorised to cat C, where, on arrival, I was told I was not allowed my digi-box but I could, at my own expense again, purchase a DVD player. I purchased a DVD player and many DVDs to play on it. I was then transferred here and upon arrival was informed that I can have my DVD player but not my DVDs!!! I can rent DVDs from the prison library but I have to pay them a £15 deposit (refundable on release). I went to the library and found that most of the DVDs on offer were exactly the same films that the prison took off me and put into stored property! Now they are saying that our duvets and bedding are to be taken but we can purchase replacements from DHL. I have to wonder whether racketeering is still illegal and if so how they can get away with this?

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Who are you calling an ‘offender’?

................................................... C Morin - HMP Wakefield

40% wage reduction

.................................................................................................... Name withheld - HMP Springhill On the 40% wage deduction for prisoners who are working outside and earn more than £20, I think this is some kind of sick joke. I am currently serving 6 years and am in open conditions and will be eligible for paid work in early 2012. At this point I have no interest in going out to work as I will have no money to take on town visits, home leaves and, eventually, my release. When is the justice system, and this goes for ‘victims’ as well, going to realise that when somebody is sent to prison that IS the punishment? Being locked up for however long, unable to be with our families or do the everyday things that those outside prison take for granted IS our punishment. Now, when the fortunate ones reach open conditions and get a chance to start work, the justice system suddenly want to add to the punishment and nick 40% of our wages!

I have been in prison for 10 years and during that time I have noticed, in many policy and official documents, the word ‘offenders’ being used to address prisoners. I must question how this fits in with HMPs decency policy? Offending, on the whole, is something we have done in the past and to use this word is like reinforcing the fact that we have offended and that is all we are defined by. I hope that we can have the term ‘offenders’ removed from all documents that relate to prisoners. I also hope to see the removal of it from your pages.

Whose side are they on?

This is a sure-fire way to increase reoffending. Well done to whoever thought of it, you’re a real star!

...................................................

Victim Support and NOMS demanding with menaces

Ashley Colville - HMP Swinfen Hall

.................................................................................................... Ian Kennedy - Wakefield The recent implementation of the Prisoners’ Earnings Act (1996) seems to have angered a great many people, not all of whom are prisoners. To have 40% of one’s earnings arbitrarily deducted must make one wonder if it is worthwhile getting a job in the community. In effect it is being taxed twice for the same job. As this compulsory 40% levy is going to Victim Support, which is a registered charity, I would like to know how it can therefore retain its status as such? Surely a ‘charity’ relies on voluntary, and not compulsory and unwilling donations? Given the news that prisoners in open conditions are being ‘blackmailed’ into going to work and paying this levy, on pain of being sent back to closed conditions, you could describe Victim Support and NOMS as being in the business of demanding money with menaces. Prisoners working in the community are being scalped by this government and it seems quite obvious that they do not give a toss for rehabilitation (despite all the mealy-mouthed rhetoric). Persecution and oppression of those who have offended seems to be the order of the day.

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Everyone goes on about prisoners reoffending and they instantly blame the Prison Service for its part but, on the whole, prison plays its part to prepare you for release. The real guilty ones are the Probation Service. Some people leave prison with a willingness to make things right and to lead a crime-free life. Then Probation gets involved and instantly ruin everything. They force us to live in hostels, usually far away from family and friends, and destroy our new found faith with a lot of seemingly petty rules and regulations designed to control us. Probation are meant to be on our side, aren’t they? To help us to lead ‘good and useful lives’ and not go straight back to crime, and yet they seem to do all they can to ensure we get recalled to prison! Isn’t it about time the Probation Service started listening to what help we really need in order to not reoffend instead of trying to lighten their caseloads by sending us back to prison?

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Mailbag

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Breaking the law ................................................... Mr Hardacre - HMP Bedford I write in response to an article in your October issue concerning the high prices we pay for canteen goods. I read that DHL/ Booker (or any canteen supplier) are not allowed to charge more than the prices marked on products. Well here at Bedford it happens all the time. We are being charged 79p for tins of tuna that are clearly marked on the tins as 59p. How can this be legal? And what do NOMS intend to do about a canteen supplier that is clearly breaking the law?

Writes David Healy - Briefing and Casework Unit I should explain that a retailer is not obliged to match the price that a manufacturer prints on the packaging. If this were the case, then offenders would more often be paying a higher price than that printed on the order form, as price points more often go up rather than down. In this situation NOMS honours the lower price printed on the canteen form. It is NOMS who set the prices, not the canteen supplier. When NOMS know something has a price marked on it, then the price charged will match that price marked. Despite not being obliged to, if the price marked on the product is lower than the printed canteen sheets, the lower price will be charged. Sometimes a parcel of stock with a lower price marked will be used for a short time, but NOMS know it will not last for the whole of the three month period that the canteen sheets are printed for. The canteen sheet will show the higher price which will need to be charged at some point, but the computer system will be set to charge the lower price whilst that stock is still in use. As a matter of course, as is the case in the community, offenders should always check their receipts to see what has actually been charged. Editorial note: So now you know the thinking behind a price of a tin of tuna priced 79p when it is marked 59p. If they followed this same practice in Tescos it would be a national scandal if not illegal!

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Slaving in the kitchen? .................................................................................................... STUART CAMPBELL - HMP WAKEFIELD why should kitchen workers be forced to work under threat of being sacked? Whilst I do understand that meals have still got to be prepared for the prison population, it should be done by those who volunteer and who are suitably compensated for giving up their Christmas and New Year holiday. Does Wakefield have the right to do this?

Writes Allen Chapman - Briefing and Casework Unit, NOMS The need for those in the Kitchen to work over any bank holiday period in providing meals to other prisoners has been recognised and continues to be recognised at Wakefield prison. While prisoners were previously paid a bonus for working during the Christmas and New Year holiday period, those arrangements have now stopped. © prisonimage.org

There has been a rather disturbing development here at HMP Wakefield. I work in the kitchens and have just been informed by the Senior Officer in charge of the kitchens that this Christmas, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day we kitchen workers will be required to work as normal, and for no extra pay! Furthermore as Christmas Day and Boxing Day fall on the Sunday and Monday there will be an extra public holiday on the Tuesday, which we will also be required to work, without any additional pay or time off in lieu. My understanding is that public holidays also apply to prisoners? Every other worker from the workshops and the education department will be off work but still get their wage, so

Instead Kitchen workers receive a higher rate of pay than prisoners employed in other parts of the prison. This extra pay is in recognition of the fact that being employed in the Kitchen necessitates prisoners having to work unsocial hours. That will include being required to work during the various bank holidays throughout the year. In addition, workers are only required to complete half a session (morning) over the three main days at Christmas while receiving pay for a full session. The work is voluntary. Should that involve Christmas Day and not Boxing Day or vice versa they will be paid for both days so they do not lose out financially. However should a prisoner decide not to work on either of the days they will receive no pay for these days.

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Insurance companies need to change

.................................................................................................... Zac Langley - HMP Wandsworth I write in relation to the article ‘Myth of rehabilitation’ (November issue). I find this hard to admit but I find myself agreeing with the previous Labour government’s ideas in their 2002 report ‘Breaking the Cycle’. This report suggests a shorter period until certain convictions are classed as spent. I feel that this policy should be adopted by the current government and introduced into law, in order to stop the continuing discrimination between those with a past criminal record and those without. The disparity and discrimination does not just stop there, it continues into the limited jobs that can be applied for and those lucky enough to get a low-paying job will then get hit with higher insurance premiums because the third question you will be asked by the insurance companies is ‘Do you have a criminal record?’ And by saying ‘yes’ your premium will increase by 18 to 25%. The government says it wishes to reduce reoffending and I feel that these are two issues that, if changed or amended, would directly bring down reoffending figures.

Damned statistics!

................................................... A de Sousa Silva - HMP Lowdham Grange In your October issue, you published the European Crime and Criminal Justice Statistics. I was very surprised to notice that in the columns about ‘immediate custody imposed on adults’ and ‘highest prison population per 100,000 populations’, you only compare England and Wales to Russia and Eastern Bloc countries. Forgive me, but this seems to be an irrelevant comparison. England and Wales should be compared to other Western European countries like Germany, France, Italy, Spain or Switzerland. I would appreciate it if you could publish such statistics in a future issue. Editorial note: The European Sourcebook gives statistics from 42 countries including Russia and former Eastern Block countries. The statistics for England and Wales were included to show the comparison between the top of the league and England and Wales.

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Usual bog-standard non-answer ................................................... Adrian Burke - HMP Wakefield In 2008 I sent a question via Inside Time to the MoJ. My question was ‘Why does the Prison Service not have a working policy in place for the overwhelming and increasing population of elderly prisoners, many of whom are over tariff or far beyond the original tariff set? This, in my view, is bordering on the inhumane. My reply to the above was the usual bogstandard non-answer from Noms that we read almost every month in the pages of Inside Time. They went on to say that ‘there is no national policy being developed by NOMS, if you have concerns then use the established complaints system.’ Typical. We are all aware how that system works (or doesn’t).

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Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

of torture at the hands of a police force that insists on not being reformed; that takes out its defeat on the bodies of the poor and the helpless. In the few hours that sunlight enters the dark cell we read what a past cellmate has inscribed on the walls in elegant Arabic calligraphy. Alaa Abd El Fattah, left, who is being held in an Egyptian jail, pictured with his wife.

Letter from a Cairo cell ................................................... Alaa Abd El Fattah The Appeals Prison, Cairo I never expected to repeat the experience of five years ago: after a revolution that deposed the tyrant, to go back to his jails. The memories come back to me, all the details of imprisonment; the skills of sleeping on the floor, nine men in a cell six-by-twelve feet, the songs of prison, the conversations. But I absolutely can’t remember how I used to keep my glasses safe while I slept. They’ve been stepped on three times already today. I suddenly realise they’re the same glasses that were with me during my last imprisonment; the one for supporting the Egyptian Judiciary in 2006. And that I am locked up, again pending trial, again on a set of loose and flimsy charges. The one difference is that instead of the State Security Prosecutor we have the Military Prosecutor - a change in keeping with the military moment we’re living now. I spend my first two days listening to stories

Four walls covered from floor to ceiling in Koranic verses, prayers and invocations and reflections. And what reads like a powerful desire to repent. Next day we discover, in a low corner, the date of execution of our cellmate of the past. The guilty make plans for repentance. What can the innocent do? My thoughts wander as I listen to the radio. I hear the speech of the General as he inaugurates the tallest flagpost in the world, which will surely break all records. I wonder: does pushing the name of the martyr Mina Danial (a Coptic Christian shot and killed during recent clashes with the military) as one of those “accused of instigation” in my case break a record in insolence? They must be the first who murder a man and not only walk in his funeral but spit on his body and accuse it of a crime. Or perhaps this cell could break a record in the number of cockroaches in a prison cell? I swear by god if this revolution doesn’t do something radical about injustice it will sink without a trace.

This letter first appeared in Arabic in Al Shorouk newspaper. Alaa Abd El Fattah. The third day, November 1st 2011. Cell No 19, The Appeals Prison, Bab el-Khalq Cairo

Bermuda Triangle mail

................................................................................................... Kev Kyberd – HMP Albany Regarding the letter from HMP Bronzefield about missing mail (November issue) I have been in four prisons in four years. At HMP Lincoln I had no problems with my mail, but at HMP Hull my outgoing mail went missing at least four or five times. When I asked if it had left the prison I was told that they didn’t keep a record. At HMP Parkhurst and Albany my mail goes missing on a regular basis. I’ve sent cards and letters to my friends and family and they have never received them, birthday cards, Christmas cards, letters – none of them seem to arrive. So it is not just HMP Bronzefield that has this problem. Sometimes it’s like the prison system is one big Bermuda Triangle when it comes to mail!

NIKOLICH & CARTER •

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Website comments via www.insidetime.org Article: Nick Hardwick speaks Comment by S

Nick, I’ve been in prisons where many an inspection has happened. The officers pretend they are professional during the inspection, the second the inspectors walk out the gate, it’s back to normal. The governor disappears back to his office and the officer to the tearoom.

....................................................... Article: BBC Documentary compelling Comment by Rod

Might be a good idea to use one of the channels on freeview or sky, like the Americans do, to expose corruption etc. Would need a lot of funding or contacts then all these cases would be exposed properly.

....................................................... Article: Month by Month Comment by SB

Until family ties are a priority, with meaningful visits designed to assist families, then it’s all a pretence. Prisoners will leave prison worse than they entered.

....................................................... Article: Methadone the liquid cosh Comment by J

felt didn’t help) but the guy interviewing my husband was really good and told the officer to wait outside the room. My husband proved himself at interview: the only person within the company that is aware he has been in prison is the owner.

....................................................... Mailbag: Lie detecting made simple Comment by H

One guy I am currently supporting spent £800 on such a test. He took the results into the witness box and attempted to show the jury. The judge said; ‘Well Mr X, that was a complete waste of £800 because that evidence is not admissible.’

....................................................... Mailbox: PSO query Comment by D

I think this is just another attempt at trying to impose “mushroom syndrome” on inmates, this time by Woodhill, namely keep them in the dark and feed them the brown smelly stuff.

Inside Time website by numbers > the first 11 months of 2011

My partner is in prison at the moment. He has been offered Methadone. Considering it’s just under an 8 week sentence and he wasn’t on drugs on the outside how the hell is that right?

....................................................... Mailbag: Victims Levy and Prisoners’ Earnings Act 1996 Comment by JR

There is one category of prisoner who is regularly robbed of the WHOLE of their income, and that is the elderly. Those men over 65 imprisoned for the first time (usually because of historic sexual allegations) had already contributed to the state pension for up to 50 years. On imprisonment, that pension is withheld by the government.

Unique visitors 845,381 Number of visits to site 1,710,646

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Number of ‘Hits’ 30,045,450

Mailbag: Electronic Footprint Comment by L

When [my husband] went for his interview he had an officer with him from outworks (which I

Website Comments Posted 2,548

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Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org The Inspectors noted; ‘The amount of violence prevalent, however, was not insignificant and neither was use of force, although many incidents were comparatively minor. Use of special accommodation, batons, removal to segregation and formal disciplinary procedures were also significant, and in most of these important areas, governance arrangements required improvement.’

The Inspector calls ... Nick Hardwick - HM Chief Inspector of Prisons Inside Time highlights areas of good and bad practice, along with a summary of prisoner survey responses, at HMP Wayland and HMYOI Deerbolt. Extracts are taken from the most recent reports published by HM Inspectorate of Prisons. Overall the Inspectors found a prison producing some good outcomes for prisoners but there were some major exceptions to a generally positive picture which, the Inspectors said, needed to be addressed as a matter of urgency.

HMP Wayland

Category C male training prison Announced inspection: 6–10 June 2011 Report date: August 2011 Published: October 2011

A prison settling down after a period of considerable change

3% Number of foreign nationals 16% Number with disabilities 19% Lost property on arrival 50% Treated well in Reception 44% Had legal letters opened 59% Food is bad or very bad 76% Treated with respect by staff 27% Victimised by staff 37% Number who have felt unsafe 19% Easy to get drugs 63% Difficult to see dentist 12% Not engaged in any purposeful activities 11% Less than 4 hours out of cell 42% Visitors treated well

New prisoners had long waits in reception before being moved to first night cells that had broken furniture and graffiti. Whilst on induction prisoners spent too long locked in their cells between sessions and alleged bullies were sometime placed on the induction wing with new arrivals. Prisoners appeared to have lost confidence in the IDTS and were abusive and threatening at the medication hatch and there were wider problems with the provision of healthcare with poor management. Inspectors said there were ‘chaotic arrangements for the administration of medication’ and they spoke to prisoners in the dispensing queue who had missed the opportunity to go to morning activities. Inspectors said; ‘Most prisoners at Wayland were safe and lived in decent conditions. They could take part in a range of good quality work, education and training activities and, for the most part, they received effective help with their practical resettlement needs.’

SHEPHERD REYNOLDS

HMYOI Deerbolt

Closed young offender institution holding convicted young male prisoners aged 18-21 Announced inspection: 20–24 June 2011 Report date: September 2011 Published: November 2011

Chief Inspector of Prisons announced inspection schedule 2011

9% Number of foreign nationals 14% Number with disabilities 12% Lost property on arrival 63% Treated well in Reception 36% Had legal letters opened 37% Food is bad or very bad 70% Treated with respect by staff 12% Victimised by staff 26% Number who have felt unsafe 27% Easy to get drugs 54% Difficult to see dentist 25%

5 December Standford Hill 12 December Dartmoor

Visitors treated well The inspection suggested that overall outcomes for prisoners continued to be reasonably good, but Inspectors identified a number of areas requiring significant further development. they were also concerned that prisoners reported more negatively than before.

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PSI Updates page 33

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Following our review of PSI2011-015 we are still getting queries from people refused entry to prisons because their passport is out of date. PSI2011-015 clearly states that as part of a member of the publics’ ID they can use ‘passport, including foreign passports, and time expired passports where the photograph is still recognisable’. The full PSI is available to download from our website.

Not engaged in any purposeful activities

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40% Less than 4 hours out of cell 33%

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Deerbolt can only provide purposeful activity for 80% of its young prisoners and, at the time of the inspection, Inspectors found 25% of them locked in cell during the core day.

Improving but significant development needed

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There was poor access to such things as kit change and showers which Inspectors put down to; ‘limited time out of cell, a lack of domestic time in daily routines and unnecessarily restrictive arrangements to manage evening association.’

The Canterville Ghost - Oscar Wilde Macbeth - William Shakespeare Henry V - William Shakespeare A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens Postage to send each book will cost £3.00 any donations toward this cost from prisoners will be welcomed. Please list alternative choices as we only have a small amount of A Christmas Carol & Macbeth. Haven Distribution 27 Old Gloucester Street London, WC1N 3XX

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Newsround

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Probation may be privatised to ‘cut costs and reoffending’

11

The things people say…

£819m probation service budget 18,466 staff employed by the service (source Napo, union for probation staff) A plan to privatise the Probation Service has been drawn up by government officials in a review of how offenders are monitored in the community, reports ‘The Times’.

Children and Young People in Custody by Numbers

1,822

The proposal would lead to more than 200,000 offenders being dealt with by private sector organisations, including some of the country’s biggest security companies.

Number of 15-18 year olds in prison

Among the options under consideration by the National Offender Management Service, which oversees both prisons and probation in England and Wales, are structural reforms, including creating regional probation services or mergers among the existing 35 probation trusts.

Young men In prison for the first time

Another option is to break the public sector monopoly in dealing with offenders by putting some probation work out to competition. This would allow the private sector to bid to run hostels for ex-prisoners as well as programmes aimed at preventing re-offending.

Young women In prison for the first time

One Whitehall source said: ‘Everything is being looked at, including the question about whether we need 35 individual trusts.’

Black or ethnic minority young men in custody

A statement from the Probation Chiefs’ Association, which represents chief probation officers, said: “We believe that the core of probation work – advice to courts and the management of offenders – should be undertaken within the public sector. It is vital that this work be kept together to ensure informed advice to courts and avoid fragmentation of supervision, which would increase the risk of public protection failures and undermine the prospects of rehabilitation.”

Talking Justice: Talking Sense As numbers in custody exceed 88,000 for the first time ever, the Prison Reform Trust has released ‘Talking Justice: Talking Sense’. This new six minute film, launched at the Prison Reform Trust’s 30th Anniversary Reception in November, presents the case for prison as a place of last resort and looks to community payback and restorative justice as better ways to cut crime. In a series of film clips those in charge of the system, regulators, offenders, victims and well known faces talk sense about justice. One of the contributors to the film was Actor and Presenter Michael Palin (pictured). He said:

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53% 48% 39% 6%

Foreign national young men

86%

Young men had been excluded from school

82%

Young women had been excluded from school

One Third

Young men and women who reported problems with drugs on arrival at prison

38%

Young women who had emotional or mental health problems

43%

Prison should be a place, “ not of first resort, but of last

Easy for their friends and family to visit

resort. There are many other ways to deal with offenders other than cutting them off from the world

Young people who felt they had done something during their time in custody that made them think they would be less likely to offend in the future



One Half

Source: HM Inspectorate of Prisons and Youth Justice Board, November 2011

beesleyandcompanysolicitors

‘What on earth has been going on in the Home Office and at our borders? Time and again, this Home Secretary (Teresa May) has not been on top of the facts and has not taken action to sort things out’ Yvette Cooper, Shadow Home Secretary speaking in the House of Commons on November 9 in the debate on Border Checks in Summer 2011. After 13 years of a Labour Government her own Home Secretary at the time declared the Home Office to be ‘not fit for purpose’. Yvette Cooper’s Government: l Trebled immigration to the UK; l Had a backlog of some 450,000 asylum cases - thousands of whom were untraceable. Some were even found working for the Home Office and a Russian was serving tea to HM The Queen; l Had no immigration controls for eight Eastern European countries; l Gave the country 2.2 million net migration – equivalent to more than 12 cities the size of Norwich; l Was reported to have issued, for much of the 13 years, one British passport to a foreign national every four minutes.

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12

Newsround

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Absent fathers to blame

The things people say…

An “epidemic” of absenteeism among fathers is revealed in a Report on the impact that their departure from the family home has on children. Drug addiction, uncontrolled anger, criminal behaviour and self-harm are all cited as consequences of a father’s absence. The Times November 3rd

The incident, which happened in June 2008 in a rush-hour traffic jam in North London was recorded on video. Although the misconduct tribunal found the officers guilty of discreditable conduct it ruled their behaviour did not warrant dismissal.

Police used batons on man’s car to recover their lost phone The Devon and Cornwall officers were given written warnings over their conduct. Two officers had stopped and searched a driver in October last year. One of the officers dropped a mobile phone in the car, but they did not realise until much later. They called at the man’s house in Plymouth, but when there was no answer, tried unsuccessfully to force open the car door. The matter was reported to the police’s professional standards department and six officers were sanctioned. Detective Superintendent Iain Grafton said: “The behaviour of these officers fell well short of what we expect.” Cops behaving badly page 19

Interviews with children and young adults from across the country have laid bare a common sense of abandonment, lack of guidance and lack of fatherly love which has led in some cases to mental health problems and difficulty bringing up children themselves. Many of those questioned said that they had sought affirmation and affection from gang membership and had drifted into drug use to numb the pain that they felt. The Dad and Me Report, which was commissioned by the charity Addaction, which works with young people who have drug and alcohol problems, warns that those who have not known their father can suffer from dangerous sub-conscious anger.

Halifax extends UK prison banking Halifax is committed to opening approximately 5,700 accounts per year for prisoners due to be released to help them integrate successfully back into society. Evidence has shown that pre-release basic bank accounts and money management training helps the rehabilitation of prisoners upon release. By holding bank accounts, released prisoners are more likely to secure stable accommodation and employment.

During the Christmas period, security at Downing Street is increased, as the regular police officer is joined by undercover officers with a seasonal disguise

In October, as part of its ongoing commitment to extend banking facilities to financially excluded groups, Halifax approached over 40 prisons. The existing service is currently available in three prisons in the UK – Wormwood Scrubs, Coldingley and Camp Hill. The first Halifax Easycash accounts can be opened before the end of December.

“We do not consider ourselves a Christian nation” Barack Obama, President of the United States, has informed everyone that the White House Christmas trees this year will be called Holiday Trees and there will be no decorations with a religious theme. Critics point out that the White House belongs to the people not the Obama’s and 85 per cent of Americans believe Christ to be the son of God.

Meanwhile former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice while promoting her new book ‘No Higher Honour’ and referring to 9/11 said: ‘We had not been attacked on our territory since the War of 1812 when the British burned the White House’ totally overlooking the attack by Japan on Pearl Harbour in 1941!

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Newsround

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Border dispute Home Secretary Theresa May admitted she agreed to relax border controls on hundreds of thousands of passengers at British ports and airports over the summer. However, she insisted she would not resign over embarrassing revelations that worries about the length of queues of passengers at passport controls resulted in tens of thousands of people entering the UK without proper checks. May said she had approved a pilot project that allowed less rigorous checks on Britons and other EU nationals, but that senior UK Border Force officials relaxed checks beyond what had been agreed. “I take full responsibility for my decisions and actions related to the pilot, but Brodie Clark (head of the UK Border Force) must take responsibility for his actions,” said May. “A policy was set by Ministers and officials chose to go beyond that policy.”

A prisoners. He also told the Court that there was a lack of suitable x-ray and metal-detecting equipment for visitors, but that evidence was contradicted by staff. In fact the only people who didn’t pass through high security were prison staff! (A crucial four minutes of video footage of the perimeter breakout had mysteriously gone missing. So too had the individual logs. These it was argued, would have shown that the prisoners could not have cut the perimeter fence themselves).   Michael Mansfield QC asked Mr Clark how many visits he had made to the Special Secure Unit. Clark said it was between six and twelve. When Mansfield produced the gate-book log for the SSU from July to December it showed not a single visit. At the Woodcock Inquiry in 1994 Brodie Clark said he had been to the Special Secure Unit at most three times. l The Home Office’s Select Committee in its most recent Report on the work of the UK Border Agency said that it was unacceptable that bonuses of between £5-£10,000 to staff in the financial year 2010-2011 when the Annual Report and accounts showed that £7 million is spent writing off bad debts and £4

million was spent on overpayments to staff and asylum claimants. The Select Committee added that the level of waste at the UK Border Agency was unacceptable. However, they looked forward to hearing evidence in December from Mr Robert Whiteman, the new Chief Executive of the UK Border Agency who was on a lower salary of £175,000 than his predecessor – still £30,000 more than the Prime Minister.

5,000 foreign offenders avoid deportation

13

News in Brief

New evidence is slowly emerging about where exactly Gaddafi’s son has been hiding.

More than 5,000 foreign offenders who should have been deported remain in the country, including almost 4,000 who are free to walk the streets, according to a report just published A total of 1,600 high-risk and serious offenders who have served their sentences are detained in immigration removal centres while the Government attempts to send them home. There were 10,745 foreign national prisoners in prison in England and Wales in March, representing just under 13 per cent of the total prison population.

At Heathrow Airport the UK Border Agency overlooks the case of yet another tourist arriving without being fingerprinted.

Lawyers paid £50m too much in legal aid blunders Lawyers were overpaid by more than £50 million doing legal aid work last year, auditors have found. The National Audit Office cited the huge errors as it refused to give the Legal Services Commission’s accounts a clean bill of health. Some £29.5 million of the excess was down to law firms claiming too much for work, while the remaining £21.2 million related to cases where individuals were not eligible for aid. The spending watchdog stressed that the overpayments had dropped by a third since 2009-10, when they were estimated at £76.5 million.

Marathon fund-raiser at Shepton Mallet l Meanwhile the recently departed UK Border Chief Brodie Clark told the Home Affairs Select Committee that ‘over 40 years I have built up a reputation and over two days that reputation has been destroyed’.

Two prisoners, Del and Reggie (pictured), at Shepton Mallet, recently completed three marathons each in three days to raise over £1,100 for Breast Cancer. Using the gym treadmill, bike and rowing machine they covered over 78 miles despite blisters and injuries along the way. Del did it in 16 hours and Reggie stormed in at just over 11 hours. The pair were supported by PE staff and fellow prisoners and were kept ‘fuelled’ by the kitchen. PEI Tony Cant told Inside Time; ‘This is the highest amount of money raised by two prisoners I have known in 10 year’s service’.

Mr Clark has perhaps forgotten his part in a fiasco that let five armed IRA terrorists out of Whitemoor in 1994, shooting and wounding a prison officer in the process.   At the 1997 trial of the six escapees Brodie Clark said the Special Secure Unit within Whitewoor did not have individual logs for Cat

At the G20 Summit Silvio Berlusconi offers to discuss the size of his deficit with a hot looking tea lady only to find she is Christina Fernandez de Kirchner, President of Argentina.

For the first time in his life FIFA boss Sepp Blatter realises he has more in common with Silvio Berlusconi than just his initials.

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14

Newsround

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Eurozone debt: Who owes what to whom?

Italy

The circles below show the foreign debt of some of the main players in the eurozone as well as other big world economies. The arrows show how much money is owed by each country to banks in other nations. The arrows point from the debtor to the creditor and are proportional to the money owed as of the end of June 2011. The colours are a rough guide to how much trouble each economy is in. Source BBC

The world’s third-largest economy has the highest public debt level amongst developed economies. However, most of its debt is owed internally, so it is not seen as at risk of default. The global financial crisis, this year’s earthquake and tsunami, a strong yen and Europe’s debt crisis are clouding its current economic outlook.

Portugal

Although the US’s overseas debt almost equates to its annual GDP, it is still regarded as a safe bet. However, its credit rating has been downgraded. Although Asia primarily China and Japan - holds the majority of US debt, Europe has the second largest percentage. This means whatever happens in the eurozone will have a deep impact on the US banking system.

Japan

USA

Italy has a large amount of debt, but it is a relatively wealthy country compared with Greece and Portugal. Fears that its debt load could grow more quickly than the Italian economy’s capacity to support it have left the markets jittery.

The biggest European economy is exposed to Greek, Irish and Portuguese, but mostly Spanish debt. If any of these defaults, Germany will be hit. Its economy is slowing, mainly because of the problems plaguing its eurozone partners. And as Europe’s industrial powerhouse, any problems in Germany mean more problems for the eurozone, but also for the wider international system.

One of three eurozone countries to so far receive a bail-out, Ireland has introduced a series of tough austerity budgets. Its economy is now showing a modest recovery. It shows a very high level of gross foreign debt to GDP because, although it is a small country, it has a large financial sector. The UK is Ireland’s biggest creditor.

Spain

Greece Greece is heavily indebted to eurozone countries and is one of three eurozone countries to have received a bail-out. Although the Greek economy is small and direct damage of it defaulting on its debts might be absorbed by the eurozone, the big fear is “contagion” - or that a Greek default could trigger a financial catastrophe for other, much bigger economies, such as Italy.

Spain’s number one worry is bailed-out Portugal, which is indebted to it by billions of euros. Spain itself owes large amounts to Germany and France.

France

Germany

The UK has very large amounts of overseas debt, of which the biggest component is the banking industry. The high debt to GDP ratio is explained by the UK’s active financial sector, where there is a great deal of capital movement. This level of overall external debt is generally not seen as a problem because the UK also holds high-value assets.

Ireland

UK

Portugal, the third eurozone country to need a bail-out, is in deep recession.

Europe’s second biggest economy is greatly exposed to the eurozone’s troubled debtors. Its banks hold large amounts of Greek, Italian and Spanish debt. This is causing market turbulence.

Newsround

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

m Do you know...?





• A dance troupe has been told that if it wants to perform in the centre of Tunbridge Wells, it must have £2m in insurance. The council says that the Amber Twirler Majorettes need the cover in case one of them accidentally injures a passer-by with a baton. The troupe (which has just 12 members, aged six to 28) has got £1m in insurance, but apparently, this is only enough to cover one person, giving out leaflets. • A school in East Yorkshire has banned pupils from raising their hands when they want to answer a question – and told them to give the thumbs-up sign instead. Cheryle Adams, head teacher at Burlington Junior School in Bridlington, said the rule had been introduced to “stop the pupils waving arms about”.

show have been warned off by lawyers for the International Olympic Committee. The British Sugarcraft Guild had wanted to celebrate the Games coming to London, but were informed that the Olympic symbols could only be used by official sponsors – even when no commercial gain was involved. • The trend for dressing children in “mini-me” versions of adult fashions is growing apace. In the first week of September, Selfridges reports that sales of mini Burberry French coats (£375) had risen by 71%. Other children’s items selling fast include Paul Smith socks (£18 a pair) and Chloe suede jackets (£465). • Last month’s riots have put people off

visiting Britain. In a poll of travellers who had been planning a holiday here before the trouble, 25% of Americans, 14% of Germans and 5% of French respondents said they no longer intended to visit.

15

News in Brief

• In April 2010, 11% of jobs in the UK economy paid less than £6.50 an hour. • A quarter of people over the age of 55 have less than £500 in savings. • More than one in eight people now resident in Britain were born abroad. • 22% of Britons prefer using Facebook rather than the telephone to keep in touch with friends.

• Children as young as ten are to be taught how to tell when pictures of celebrities have been airbrushed to help prevent them from suffering low self-esteem. Under the scheme, which is part of the Government’s Body Confidence campaign, pupils will be asked to spot the difference between pictures of Britney Spears in a swimming costume before and after her figure was digitally slimmed down.

Dignitas and Exit International in Switzerland are branching out to include family pets.

Prince William signs a new £1 million contract with Pringles.

• 67% of the public think the European Court of Human Rights has too much power over UK laws. 18% say the balance is about right. • 1.5% of British adults over 16 describe themselves as gay, lesbian or bisexual, a small rise from 2010. 68.5% say they are Christian (even if they are not practising), down from 71.3%; 4.4% identify themselves as Muslim; 1.3% as Hindu; 0.7% as Sikh; 0.4% as Buddhist, and 0.4% as Jewish. • Cake decorators who planned to use the Olympics as a theme for their annual cake

Visitors to St Paul’s Cathedral in London are shocked – not by the anti-capitalist demonstrators camping outside in tents (after all, St Paul was a tent maker) – but by the prices to get into the Cathedral. Adults: £14.50, or a Family Ticket at £34.50. Although the Church of England has expressed some sympathy with the anti-capitalist cause, they are reported to have some £2 billion worth of investments in the City of London. HM The Queen, who is Head of the Church of England, is said to be masking her true feelings.

And in Southern Afghanistan goats hear a rumour about land mines.

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16

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Month by Month by Rachel Billington

Jon Snow delivers a thought-provoking Longford Lecture and Rachel hears her father called ‘a living God’

parking it there, it’s not crime, it’s not illegal, but it doesn’t feel right, it doesn’t feel what most of us do. How come that Britain, housing the world’s greatest financial centre, also retains a strange overhang of empire in the form of a whole raft of tax havens that extend from the Channel Islands to the Caribbean and beyond?’ There is a door, he told us, that he had seen in the Cayman Islands, ‘which contains the names of 964 businesses and yet there is only one room inside.’ Acknowledging the surprising fact that social reformer Longford was Chairman of a bank when Snow first met him, he explained that, despite his role as a successful journalist he finds it almost impossible to understand what banks are up to and doesn’t believe that most of the bankers themselves can see the whole picture. It’s therefore quite impossible to work out what crimes may or may not have been committed. ‘But I cannot believe that you can have an event so searing, so globally destructive as the meltdown of 2008 without what you and I might recognise as crime or an element of crime. Yet how many are behind bars? A few traders in New York?’

Photo courtesy The Independent Award winners pictured left to right: Ian Batchelor, Al Cresci, Chris Moore, Maria Gibson, (Jon Snow, Shami Chakrabati) and David Brown.

‘C

rime, Punishment and the Media’ - Jon Snow was jumping in deep when he gave the tenth annual Longford Lecture. Chaired by the Director of Liberty, Shami Chakrabati, over six hundred people heard Jon describe how he saw the problems of society. He told the story in a very personal way, beginning with a description of how in 1968 Frank Longford picked him out to run New Horizon Youth Centre (a centre for vulnerable and homeless teenagers still open today) because he’d been chucked out of university and seemed the right kind of person. The last director, Longford confided not very reassuringly, had left with a nervous breakdown. Snow survived, is still chair and says that he owes much of his journalistic success to contact with the people he met at New Horizon. This led him to into the subject of Crime and Crime

and the Riots. He is proud that not one of the 250 young people connected to New Horizon were drawn into the riots because, he told us, ‘they felt they had a stake in their own futures’ and adults who were going to help them sort out their lives. The media called the rioters ‘feral’ and caused many to think, as Snow said, ‘Oh gosh, this is the beginning of the end, the underclass is rising up, we’ve had it.’ Labelling, he pointed out, is a problem; many people suggested rioters were gang members which turned out not to be the case at all. The main issue, Snow suggested, was ‘disconnection’ among the young. The rioters were easy to identify as criminals but Snow wanted more light on the unseen criminal. ‘When you read that big corporations have been excused £6 million of taxes, when you realise that people make it and then take it and park it somewhere else, in the Cayman Islands, perhaps, making it here but

From the difficulties of identifying Crime, Snow moved to Punishment. Again he was keen to enlarge the picture. He pointed out that his whole career kicked off when he was punished for a sit-in by being sent down from university. Punishment, in his case, had a good, if unlikely, effect. He talked about a flute player, punished when rioters set fire to her flat and burnt her entire collection of 18 flutes - and her two cats. Unemployment is a punishment in Snow’s terms, and women are punished by losing their jobs at a faster rate than men. The situation has been caused by people’s behaviour but nobody responsible has been punished because it’s too complex to understand. ‘Therefore when I think of Crime and Punishment, ‘ he said, ‘I want people to expand out and think about what we do to each other in this world, about the huge gulf between rich and poor... We can’t fix it overnight, but if we begin to think about it, we can do more.’ So we moved on to Media where, given his position as star anchorman for Channel Four News, it is perhaps not surprising that Snow found reasons for hope. Avoiding the issue of phone hacking, he emphasised the liberation of information by the internet. He said, ‘We are seeing the democratisation of information. Mechanisms exist now to politicise, to

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campaign, to bring together, as the Arab Spring has shown....’ Looking back on his early experiences as a journalist in 1973, he noted how ‘very, very well-behaved’ he was, as was everyone else. No one would have dared call out, during a Downing Street press conference, ‘Prime Minister, what do you think of Mrs. Merkel today?’ This lack of subservience and questing for information was, in his view, a positive development. Finally, he begged us all to ask questions because, he believes, there are answers out there. ‘We’ve got to try and make ourselves more aware of the world in which we live, and ask questions, endless questions, and Google for answers, and see if the answers are true.’ As well as a lecture, the Longford Trust gives prizes for those working in prison or social areas and also runs a scholarship programme for ex-prisoners who want to work in higher education. Lord Ramsbotham introduced this year’s prize-winners: The Clink at HMP Highdown was overall winner, with commendation to Al Cresci, the chef and innovator of the programme, and the governor, Peter Dawson. Chris Moore, the programme’s chief executive, explained the ongoing training in the prison where their restaurant operates, and their ambition to move into other prisons. Appropriately, the evening’s delicious food was provided by The Clink - straight from the prison to the event; all the excellent catering was sponsored by the generous Kevin McGrath.

Photo courtesy The Independent Barry and Maragaret Mizen receive their prize from Shami Chakrabati

Another prize went to the Jimmy Mizen foundation, founded by Barry and Margaret Mizen who, since their son’s murder, have worked to help change society, including founding ‘city safe havens’ where young people can run into if they feel threatened. The judges, chaired by ex-prison governor,

Diary

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org John Podmore, also commended Untapped Resource, a small community based organisation from Mansfield, led by Ian Batchelor, Maria Gibson and Teresa Jackson who try to tackle youth alienation and hopelessness. A Lifetime Achievement Award was given to David Brown who, following a career as a probation officer, joined the Inside Out Trust which co-ordinated re-cycling in prison workshops. When this trust folded, he put up his own savings in order to keep the trust going under its new name, Margaret Carey Foundation. Just before we left the hall, Peter Stanford, the

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dynamic director of the Longford Trust, introduced the audience to three of the scholars who are receiving money and being mentored by Longford Trust volunteers: Naomi Stewart, Simon Williams and Peter Angliss. Their enthusiasm for their studies and for future possibilities well away from their prison past, ended the evening on a high note. Frank Longford’s many relatives particularly enjoyed the moment when Simon pointed to the huge image of Longford behind the stage and cried enthusiastically, ‘He was a living God!’ Speaking as his daughter, I must disagree. Nevertheless, nice one Simon.

..........................................................................................................

Nature Notes A monthly feature for Inside Time by James Crosby

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Holloway Jones was born in Holloway prison but she is trying to cycle her way to a better life. Then she meets Avery and finds herself in the kind of joint enterprise that it is better to avoid. This is Synergy Theatre Project’s new drama by Evan Placey. I saw it with an audience of young enthusiasts at the Unicorn Theatre. The play, which may have a message but is also very exciting, has been touring in schools for six weeks.

f one were to find themselves temporarily situated to a crepuscular woodland edge this month, when the moon is full and the evening air is clear and cold, and unploughed stubble stretches before you, an elusive shape of richest red may slip across your path; whilst the cock pheasant crows and the tawny owl hoots in alarm under the moonlight still. It will be in a hurry, occasionally pausing to listen and sniff the air. If you keep still and the wind is in your favour, the shadowy creature may sit and make its presence all too apparent: its spine-chilling calls pierce the frosty landscape before you – a volley of vulpine barking. For December is one of the busiest, and noisiest, times for the normally solitary living red fox. Vixens can be fertile from late November into early March but for some reason, foxes become increasingly vocal in their mating calls when the air is crisp and the night is still and freezing, perhaps, these are simply the conditions which foxes like best as their voices echo to and fro across the fields. I have heard them calling when there is low cloud and heavy rain, but somehow, they sounded muted. The dog fox announces his presence with short triple barks and in response the vixen will throw her head up and call in a sharp, shrill scream some distance away – it is nightmarish, but there is something wild, spine tingling and primeval in the winter sounds of mating foxes.

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restricted to the wild wood, for the fox has invaded suburbia and under bilious yellow street lighting in many of our inner cities, the dog fox will range the neighbourhood in search of a vixen in breeding condition. To the specialist fox watcher it is often sad to see such magnificent animals living a miserable existence in an inner city, often in a thin and mangy state - the alert, lithe, full coated spectre of the country fox transformed into a scraggy scavenger of dust bins. However, it is nevertheless, a species finding a niche in the heart of the suburban, seeing man as a source of food and shelter: survival. After mating, the vixen will search fields, gardens and railway embankments for a suitable place to give birth to cubs which are born blind and deaf, seven or eight weeks later. I have found many fox earths and they all have one thing in common: litter. The entrance to a fox earth is littered with the remains of their prey – bird’s wings, feathers, rabbit skins and once I found the remains of a piglet from a neighbouring pig unit. The fox is an extremely adaptable species, living in high densities in our towns and cities, however, several tens of thousands are killed each year by people, they are shot and trapped and are hit by cars; mortality is high in young animals too, and yet enough animals survive to sustain such high densities.

James Crosby is currently resident at HMP Stocken

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Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

A Surprising Absence of Scandal Professor David Wilson ponders on why nobody seems to care about prison violence

David Wilson

P

risons, like the poor, would seem to have always been with us, although in fact the origins of our formal penal system are as recent as 1877. Indeed (ignoring the Tower of London) the state’s first ever prison - Millbank - was only built in 1812. So too public debate about what should happen inside of our prisons is also a relatively new phenomenon and John Howard (17261790) - whilst High Sheriff of Bedfordshire was the first to make his mark by commenting publicly on the conditions in which people were being incarcerated, and by then creating a scandal about the awful things he had discovered were going on inside our jails. His scandals also led to some real penal changes, as a new book about his life by Tessa West called ‘The Curious Case of Mr Howard: Legendary Prison Reformer’ reveals. What has changed and what has stayed the same since Howard first brought the issue of prison conditions and penal reform to the public’s attention? The most obvious thing that we can say is that prisons do not generate the same level of scandal that they used to in Howard’s day. Why should that be? Have penal conditions improved so much that we can be proud of what happens in our names in our jails? Of course the sad answer is that they have not: we still debate endlessly about the suicide rate in our prisons; the numbers of people

with mental health problems who are inappropriately locked up; the overcrowding; the lack of facilities available for people who want to learn to read and write, or who want to develop employment skills. To these criticisms - these scandals - we could now add a new one: the murder rate in prison is higher than the murder rate in the community. The murders of Colin Hatch at HMP Full Sutton earlier this year and more recently of Mitchell Harrison at HMP Frankland – the latter who was disembowelled, seemingly after those accused of his murder had watched a documentary about Jack the Ripper – have hardly caused ripples of anxiety within the Ministry of Justice about how safe our prisons are, or indeed within the wider public about what happens to those that get locked up. It’s almost as if a perverted, common sense, moral hierarchy has emerged which forbids us from questioning too carefully why our prisons are so unsafe. Perhaps some even quietly revel in this macabre form of capital punishment. After all, in a common sense way, convicted sex offenders are “sick” and deserve what they get and what the courts didn’t give them but what their cell mates could. Presumably we are also supposed to think that the armed robbers who kill these “nonces” are not only “healthy” but also performing some kind of public service.

work in our penal system, there have been improvements that have ameliorated the worst excesses of what happens if you get locked up in England and Wales. So, for example, there is counselling available from trained staff (and other prisoners); there is the pioneering regime at HMP Grendon - still the only prison in Europe to operate as a therapeutic community (but which will soon have to deal with a murder that happened there too); there are phones which can keep the prisoner in touch with their loved ones; there has been a concerted effort to provide integral sanitation and most prisoners now have access to electricity in their cells.

happens there and thus it is the media which creates a sense of who prisoners are and what happens - for good or for ill - inside our jails.

These improvements serve to distract and deflect criticism away from our prisons, to the extent that some public commentators – such as those to be found on the right – would claim that prison has become “too soft”, too much of a “holiday camp”. Indeed this underscores the fact that prisons have to appeal for their legitimacy to competing audiences – the public, the prisoners and the staff – and the reality that one audience’s “improvement” is merely another audience’s “its all gone too far”.

Of course nothing could be further from the truth, but the only way that we can reconnect the public debate about prisons and prisoners to our own lives is to tell the stories of those who we are locking up, and reminding ourselves that frankly, no matter what an offender has done, they don’t deserve to be disembowelled and that the Prison Service has a duty to protect them from violence.

Secondly, prisons are very adept at concealing scandal. The high prison walls not only serve to keep prisoners in, but also the public out. We only heard about these most recent murders because they were subject to police investigations. Thus, at the most basic level prisons remain secret places, where staff still sign the Official Secrets Act and where news of suicides, murders, riots, roof-top demonstrations and so forth only slowly leaks out - if at all.

Why hasn’t there been debate about these murders and more generally why don’t our prisons and what happens in them generate more scandals?

That’s why media representations of prisons and prisoners are so important, for the reality is that very few members of the public will ever visit a prison, or see firsthand what

I think that there are three possible answers. First, and in testament to many fine people who

Deaths in Custody

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

64,602

66,301

70,778

73,038

74,657

75,979

78,127

80,216

82,572

83,461

147

142

164

183

208

174

153

185

165

168

Self-inflicted Self-inflicted

81

73

95

95

95

78

67

92

60

60

Natural Causes Causes

Prison Population Deaths in prison custody custody

62

68

66

86

102

88

83

91

9

105

Other non-natural non-natural

1

1

3

1

9

5

3

0

3

3

Homicide Homicide

3

0

0

1

2

3

0

2

3

0

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Finally, prisons and what happens there seems remote – prisons seem disconnected to what is happening in our lives and what is of concern to our lives. They are not about the school run; finishing that degree course; getting help for some health problem; making certain that there is food on the table and that the rent can be paid. More than this prisoners seem like “predators” - aliens who deserve their fate and who we are all well rid of.

Every prisoner - including those who have been murdered - is somebody’s son or daughter, somebody’s husband or wife, uncle or aunt, father or mother. Indeed the family of Mitchell Harrison, while condemning his offence, reminded people that he was still nonetheless “a much loved son and brother who did not deserve to die in this horrific way”. Above all, the Harrison’s statement should also remind us that we are all ultimately connected to each other, and that we shouldn’t just sit around waiting for yet another sex offender to be executed, but demand that the Prison Service acts on its duty of care to those that it locks up and if it doesn’t then, like Mr Howard, we should cause a scandal. David Wilson is a former prison governor and is currently a professor in Criminology at Birmingham City University The Curious Case of Mr Howard: Legendary Prison Reformer. Tessa West (2011) Waterside Press price £29.95

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Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Cops behaving badly BBC Panorama asks, who is policing the police?

Reporter Richard Bilton (pictured): When it comes to misconduct cases, the police investigate themselves. The IPCC have a role in only a small number of very serious cases and the most they can do is identify misconduct. The punishment is completely down to the individual officer’s own force. The panels which decide the outcomes of misconduct hearings almost always sit in private – individual forces dealing with their own cases behind closed doors. Jocelyn Cockburn is a lawyer who specialises in handling cases against the police.

Solicitor Jocelyn Cockburn (pictured): The problem is that you get inconsistency but there isn’t transparency in the first place. That’s where there is a gap here because there’s very little evidence to show that lessons are being learned. Reporter: Police misconduct can be anything from rudeness to physical violence. Now the police are supposed to be one of the most regulated public bodies. But who is making sure the misconduct panels do their job?

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DG: Yes, and we will take action at those levels and we will determine a case to action at those levels if that’s appropriate. Reporter: Panorama has found that when the police themselves think that officers have a case to answer, things can be very different. There is a back door available for officers who don’t want to go through the misconduct proceedings. You simply retire or resign, make the decision yourself as a way of avoiding justice. And we’ve discovered how many police officers just walk away. Our Freedom of Information requests show that over the last three years at least 489 officers have chosen this route. JC: If they are allowed to leave the police without any stain on their character, then there is a chance that they can go and work for another force, and I’m afraid it does happen.

Reporter: So how many decisions are made about police misconduct with little or no national oversight? It’s not easy to find out. We put in Freedom of Information requests to 53 forces in the UK and 47 of them responded. We discovered that there were 1915 guilty findings against officers for misconduct between 2008 – 2010. 382 were dismissed or required to resign. Nearly a fifth of punishments handed down resulted in officers leaving the force. And all these decisions about police misconduct are being made in private with virtually no national oversight. Reporter: What’s lost though, in that nobody has that single oversight? DG: Well, I think it makes consistency a problem; guidance can be a problem, and I think it does have an impact on public confidence. Reporter: Are you comfortable with a system which has no national overview? Chef Constable Peter Fahy (Greater Manchester Police): Well, number one,      got 43 forces in this country so we are we’ve not a national system.

 

Reporter: Do you think the majority of   officers would find it hard to admit that they had done anything wrong?

PF: There is a judgement about do you want to wait for a long drawn out disciplinary procedure which you know is likely to end in the officer losing his job or if that officer is willing to resign, is it not in the public interest again to get them off the payroll and to avoid the cost and expense of a hearing and that is a fine judgement. JC: It is frustrating and I think the answer from APCO is not good enough; it’s not just an issue of cost, it is an issue of justice. Reporter: What do you think the man or woman on the street thinks of the idea that so many officers resign or retire before they get to misconduct proceedings? Peter Fahy (pictured): Yes, I think probably – it’s not that they would find it difficult but I think they would be suspicious – I think a lot of officers would say, well, no, I don’t trust the system, and I think we need a more commonsense approach that admits that police officers are human and that they do sometimes make mistakes, and is accepting of that. Reporter: One of the criticisms is that it’s normally very low ranking police officers that might end up with the punishment. Do you think that’s a fair criticism? DG: No, I don’t think so. What we will do is take the evidence where it takes us. If it takes us to higher levels within an organisation - and there are numerous examples where we’ve done this - we will expect to see action at these levels. Reporter: Do you expect to see action?

DG: I imagine they would regard that as the officers ‘getting away with it.’ Reporter: Is that a fair perception? DG: In some cases it may well be. Reporter: How can it be that one of our most regulated professions has such a large loophole? We expect a lot from our police officers. But when they get it wrong the cost can be high. And it’s hard to know if our system of dealing with police officers accused of misconduct is fair when so many crucial decisions are still made behind closed doors and those accused are free to get up and walk away. An extract from ‘Cops behaving badly’ broadcast by BBC Panorama October 31 2011

   

  Deborah Glass - Deputy Chairman, Independent Police Complaints Commission (pictured): There is no overall body that has responsibility for the police misconduct system, other than the Home Office, I daresay. Reporter: So there is no-one watching that area? DG: Individual forces will report to their individual authorities so police authorites have a role there. But is there a single, over-arching body doing that? No, I don’t think there is.

 

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Comment

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org Amar now works with many young people who have been in prison, and uses TSBC’s networks to help them get started up in business. They work in partnership with all frontline services, including offender management and substance misuse, and create a plan that will give the person all the individualised help they need, using a wide network of mentors and entrepreneurs. He makes the point that the skills and acumen of a drug dealer can so easily be trained for success – so why not make best use of an entrepreneurial mind?

The group of young winners on the enterprise scheme

Inside Drink and Drugs News Drink and Drugs News (DDN) is the monthly magazine for all those working with drug and alcohol clients, including in prisons. In a regular bi-monthly column, Editor Claire Brown looks at what’s been happening lately in the substance misuse field

W

ith record levels of youth unemployment just unveiled, it’s hard to be cheery about the prospects for young people – particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds who have to make their own luck. But for last month’s cover story I interviewed a young man called Amar Lodhia, who set up The Small Business Consultancy (TSBC).

The interesting thing about Amar was that he had been in trouble at school, including taking drugs, but had turned his maverick streak into entrepreneurial ambition. From being a young offender, burning cars and looting, he developed an interest in business and started learning from the habits of successful entrepreneurs. He graduated from business school with a burning desire ‘to help people who came from the background I did’.

I attended their annual awards evening the other week, and saw young people, who had been kicked out of school not that long ago, being rewarded for their innovative business ventures. There were two joint winners as the judges had been so impressed with the quality of entrants. Christopher, aged 19, had invented hydrogen powered portable heating solutions – a remarkable journey since being excluded from school aged 14, a routine drinker who was unable to read, write or count properly, and kept ending up in police cells. The other winners, Giorgio (17) and Malaik (just 13) had invented a headboard that read stories to children, a project that had similarly reversed their dropout status and brought them into contact with a manufacturer that was making a prototype. The overriding message of the awards evening – and the scheme as a whole – was the value of support and motivation in converting skills and talents that are lurking in all of us. A third of drug and alcohol users became abstinent after going on the entrepreneurs’ programme, and of 253 people only 11 reoffended, against a national average of 78 per cent.

Getting motivated with the chaps from British Military Fitness

Talking of motivators, our latest magazine also featured a scheme from the drug and alcohol treatment charity Turning Point. From working with clients in both the community and the criminal justice system, they had realised ‘the

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enormous benefits that sport and exercise can play in a person’s recovery journey’. Experience had shown them that clients were more likely to leave services drug free if they had been involved in some kind of physical activity, so the charity joined up with British Military Fitness – all of whom are serving or former members of the armed forces – to give service users a chance of working with the trained instructors. British Military Fitness now operates in 105 parks in the UK and has 20,000 members. They run classes in a disciplined military style, alongside giving participants plenty of positive encouragement. The idea is to help people push themselves to the limit, while working in an environment where they can develop supportive relationships with each other. The sense of camaraderie encourages them to look out for each other and push themselves further than if they were working out by themselves or in the gym. Turning Point has noticed a ‘huge decrease’ in heroin and crack cocaine use since service users began attending the tailored training sessions, because the natural high of endorphins through exercise takes away the need to use stimulants like crack. It also instils a sense of routine and purpose that helps in trying to rebuild their lives. Becky, a former crack cocaine user, has been abstinent for five months with the help of the scheme and is now studying English and maths at college, while John a former rough sleeper and regular crack user recently completed the gruelling national three peaks climbing challenge. ‘Now I feel I can do anything and really move on with my life,’ he says.

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Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

I

come to Punishment. I mean, for me a lost university degree, a lost life in the law, and for no apparent crime. I mean, all we were sent down for was running a sit-in in the university’s administrative headquarters because the university was investing in a company which had very large holdings in apartheid South Africa. So, it was, you know, it was perfectly ... well, nowadays you’d get crowned for that, but not then. For Mr Madoff it’s incarceration until he dies, and for some of the rioters it’s four years in jail. “Prison” becomes a label, “ex-prisoner”, as does the crime committed. I could not possibly have come here today to lecture you about that kind of crime and punishment because most of the people in this room know much more about it than I do and I’ll never know as much as you know because, even though I am touched by it by meeting some of our young offenders, that doesn’t make you any kind of expert. But just as I would expand the concept of crime I want to expand the concept of punishment into a wider scope.

able sounds. They each cost over £10,000 and were made by single workers, one in Japan and one in Holland. So she lost tens of thousands in flutes but you saw the community pull together and raise £30,000 for her in the local music shop so there was some degree of redemption for her.

The Annual Longford Lecture

Photo courtesy The Independent

I want to tell you about Carla Rees (pictured). Carla Rees is the most wonderful innovative classical flautist. She lived in Croydon and her street became an eerie place on the first night of the riots and at nine o’clock she began to sense that where she was, was not safe. She was in her own flat but there was a very ugly feeling outside and there was a lot of noise and she decided she should leave and she took one of her nineteen flutes which just happened to be in the car and she and her partner headed away from Croydon. That night, in a pub somewhere in central London, she saw her own house burn to the ground

Broadcaster Jon Snow delivering the lecture on Crime, Punishment and the Media. Here we select a brief extract from his speech and the whole row of houses with it and her 19 flutes went with it and her two cats and every possession she had in the world. That was a punishment. For what? Who knows, but it was punishment. She experienced what people who go to prison experience, who lose everything, she experienced total abject, brutal loss. She was punished. That was a punishment. I went to see her - the insurance company have been fantastic, they have

provided her with a very nice, little …. very, very small cottage in a row in Windsor and she loves Windsor and she would love to live there. But she still has nothing tangible around her. She has one flute, one music stand. She lost 650 staves of music which had been adapted for her flutes. Three of her flutes were bass and alto flutes, huge instruments with special extra engineering on them to enable her to produce even more remark-

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But when I left I couldn’t help noticing in a house that had no furniture beyond the three chairs around the dining table and I presumed a bed upstairs, I couldn’t help noticing that, hanging next to the front door on eight hooks, was one coat and one scarf. She had nothing beyond what I had seen. And then I think of the massed ranks of unemployed young people, a million punished for the fiscal and financial failures of their elders, I think of women hemorrhaging jobs ten times faster than men, according to yesterday’s figures. It is when I think of this suffering that I think of the unpunished crimes which may or may not exist, may or may not have brought this about, but I don’t know and I don’t actually have a mechanism for knowing even though I am a well-paid reporter supposed to get at these things. It is an impossible world to penetrate, it’s so complex. It’s so complex that there is no one person on earth who has any idea of the totality of how it works and those who fall foul of it by accident are in a sense punished by it and therefore I suppose when I think of crime and punishment I want people to kind of expand out and think about what we do to each other in this world, about the huge gulf between rich and poor, the huge gulf in this country between rich and poor, the huge gulf between the rich and poor in India and in Africa. We can’t fix it overnight but if we begin to think about it we can do more.

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Immigration removal centres or prisons? Charles Hanson puts the spotlight on immigration centres

Charles Hanson

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hat with over 107,300 persons being legally detained in the UK, one could be forgiven for thinking that the UK is heading towards the creation of a fortress state. As of November 2011, figures showed that there are 88,115 prisoners in England and Wales, 7,900 in Scotland, 1,400 in Northern Ireland, 280 in the Channel Islands, 90 on the Isle of Man, and 1,055 patients detained in Secure Hospitals. There are another 5,000 in medium secure psychiatric units, 300 children in Secure Training Centres, 315 in Secure Children’s Homes and 3,300 in Immigration Removal Centres. For the purpose of this article I will focus on those detained in Immigration Removal Centres. Immigration Removal Centres are holding centres for foreign nationals awaiting decisions on their failed asylum application claims or awaiting deportation following a failed application. Previously known as ‘detention centres’, the name was formally changed to ‘removal centres’ under the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 to “reflect the part played by detention in the removal of failed asylum-seekers and others”. The power to detain immigrants was first provided by the Immigration Act 1971, which allowed the detention of asylum seekers in detention centres or even prisons. Prior to 2002 there were two types of detention centre: the removal centre and the removal prison. These were much like prison facilities, with the aim being to impose restrictions on the movement of the detainees, so that the government could monitor their whereabouts

distress” to them and their families. The problem of “hidden children” being held in immigration detention centres is also an issue. The IMB’s annual report revealed that six children who were held last year at Harmondsworth were removed by social services when it was established they were, in fact, children. After the IMB reported that: “Arrangements should be made for the rapid assessment of those claiming to be under 18”. The latest addition to the immigration removal estate “Cedars” in East Sussex was opened in August 2011. Cedars is a pre-departure accommodation centre for nine families who can be held for 72 hours or up to a week in “exceptional circumstances”. The government claims that with Cedars they have “put an end to child detention”. The facility is run by Group 4 with play facilities for children provided by Barnardo’s; despite several protests against Barnardo’s demanding that they cease their involvement in the deportation machine. Aside from the detention centres and residential short term holding facilities, the UK holds thousands of people under immigration detention rules in HM Prisons every year. Migrants are also detained at ports and airports, in cells at reporting centres and in police custody. This increased use of detention came about in response to public concern about the government’s ability to handle the rising numbers of applications for asylum since the late 1990’s.

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whilst their claims were being processed. Some were actually held in prisons. The detention of asylum seekers in such austere conditions was widely condemned by human rights groups, politicians, and many others who insisted that they should not be treated like criminals. By 2001, the number of asylum seekers had reached an all-time high and the government embarked on a programme to provide a network of detention centres with the aim of moving towards a situation where no asylum seeker would be held in a prison. In addition, the ‘Detention Centre Rules 2001’ were introduced which stipulated the way in which the centres were to be run, ensuring humane treatment of all detainees. The Detention Centre Rules 2001 sets out the objectives of each holding centre as: “The

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purpose of detention centres shall be to provide for the secure but humane accommodation of detained persons in a relaxed regime with as much freedom of movement and association as possible, consistent with maintaining a safe and secure environment, and to encourage and assist detained persons to make the most productive use of their time, whilst respecting in particular their dignity and the right to individual expression.” A particularly controversial and emotive topic is the detention of children in immigration removal centres. Following an unannounced visit to Yarl’s Wood centre by Anne Owers, the then Chief Inspector of Prisons, a report published in March 2010 concluded that many children were being held unnecessarily, often for long periods of time, and that this was having a noticeable adverse effect on the children’s well-being, causing “disruption and

The use of detention is controversial because opponents argue it is wrong to imprison or restrict the movements of people who have committed no crime, and in many cases, people who have come to the UK to escape persecution. Those detained and their advocates have frequently complained about the conditions inside detention centres and the treatment of detainees by staff. Clearly, the issues relating to those awaiting deportation from the UK are as complex as they are frustrating for those who find themselves detained in an Immigration Removal Centre which are arguably closer to a prison environment than any other facility and the changing of the description from Immigration Detention Centre to Immigration Removal Centre does little to alleviate what is, after all, legal custody.

Charles Hanson was formerly a resident of HMP Blantyre House

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The abuse of mentally ill prisoners in Close Supervision Centres CSCs are operating regimes that are unlawful and should be closed, says John Bowden

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rison doctors, psychiatrists and psychologists are currently complicit in the abuse and psychological torture of mentally ill prisoners held in a brutal jail control-unit at Woodhill Prison in Milton Keynes. In 1998 the then labour government introduced the so-called Close Supervision Centres (CSC) as a method of punishing and controlling “difficult” and “unmanageable” prisoners, and explicitly defined both the purpose of the CSC and the type of prisoners it was created to hold. The CSC was designed as an overt weapon of punishment based behaviour modification against prisoners motivated to cause unrest and disruption in mainstream prison regimes; essentially the type of prisoners targeted were “subversives” and violent troublemakers. It was never openly said that within this group of controlproblem prisoners earmarked for the CSC would be included prisoners suffering with mental illness or suicide tendencies. Never was it admitted that within a control unit characterised by endemic staff violence and brutality would mentally disturbed and damaged prisoners be subjected to the same degree of abuse and ill-treatment. Yet in August of this year Claire Hodson, operational manager of the CSC at Woodhill Prison, openly stated that a significant number of the prisoners held in the CSC suffered with what she described as a “mental disorder”. Information provided by prisoners within the Woodhill CSC describes

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During the 1980s a then Tory government with a ruthless antipathy towards state financed and administered health care closed most of the large psychiatric hospitals and cast it's inmates and patients effectively onto the streets under the heading and illusion of “care in the community”. Many of those patients then found their way into the prison system, somewhere hopelessly ill-equipped and disinclined to deal with them in a medically appropriate and therapeutic way. Some of that same group, because of their more “confrontational behaviour” towards prison authority, as defined and interpreted by guards trained only in how to control and lock

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Punishing mentally ill prisoners for behaviour associated with their illness is both morally reprehensible and a unarguable abuse of basic human rights, and all those involved in administering the regime in the CSCs under which mentally ill prisoners are effectively being tortured should be held legally accountable.

Historically of course the collusion and collaboration of the prison doctors, psychiatrists and psychologists in the ill-treatment and repression of prisoners has a long and infamous tradition. In the 1960s and 1970s compliant prison employed psychiatrists frequently and unlawfully assisted prison staff to control and subdue “unmanageable” prisoners by forcefully and unlawfully administering psychotropic drugs in a practice that became known as the “liquid cosh”. Jail psychiatrists also provided their authority to medicate the resistance of rebellious prisoners by facilitating their removal to high-security mental hospitals such as Broadmoor and Rampton in a form of punishment that was known as “Nutting off”. During the 1980s the removal of “difficult” prisoners to jail psychiatric units such as the notorious “F.2.” unit at Parkhurst MaximumSecurity jail represented the ultimate punishment for those prisoners too “unmanageable” to be handled in ordinary prison segregation

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units; few prisoners emerged from places like “F.2.” seriously undamaged psychologically or punch-drunk from the constant “sedation” of mind-destroying drugs administered by completely amoral prison hired psychiatrists. In the totalitarian society of prison such psychiatrists freed from any accountability or legal sanction align themselves completely with the institutional interests of prison regimes and often gladly participated in the institutional abuse of prisoners.

such mentally damaged prisoners being driven beyond the limits of psychological endurance by a regime characterised by solitary confinement, sensory deprivation and brutality. The involvement of prison hired doctors and psychiatrists in either mitigating the increased mental trauma and damage caused to such prisoners by the CSC regime or vetting out completely such mentally ill and vulnerable prisoners from the CSC appears minimal or non-existent, which amounts to obvious collusion in the ill-treatment of such prisoners.

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people up, will find their way into punishment orientated prison segregation-units where further and more deeper brutalisation will take place and greater damage inflicted. Those who respond to that with a more resilient streak of resistance or “inappropriate behaviour” will at some point find themselves consigned to a CSC, where the prison system will really go to work on their minds and spirits. Self-mutilation will then usually manifest itself, and within the Woodhill jail CSC levels of self-harm are disproportionately high (earlier this year a mentally ill prisoner in the Woodhill CSC completely severed both his ears whilst in the showers and in possession of a razor blade), something it's operational manager Claire Hodson knowledgeably describes as a “coping mechanism or as a maladaptive coping strategy, as well as diagnosis of one or more personality disorders”. And yet she is responsible for enforcing a regime deliberately intended to inflict the worst possible psychological damage upon this particular category of “difficult” prisoners. The psychological torture and abuse of the mentally ill anywhere in society is a crime and the CSCs are therefore responsible for operating regimes that are intrinsically unlawful and should be closed and shut down.

John Bowden is a resident at HMP Shotts

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Can a leopard change its spots? According to Officer Barry Donovan and the inmates who built, and now run, the Leopard Studios at HMP Isle of Wight/Parkhurst ... yes it can!

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niques Level 1, has been co-written by Barry and JB who are now in the process of writing Levels 2 and 3. From humble beginnings Leopard Studio now runs Cubase 6, a more industry standard specification software package and with funds generated a mixing deck, drum kit, MPC sampler and various guitars were purchased along with upgraded microphones.

he studio started sixteen months ago after two separate conversations on the wing between Barry Donovan and two inmates, Gemini and JB. The guys were happy to let others on the wing use their personal recording equipment if a room could be found in which to house and use it. The studio proved so popular that soon a bigger room was required. In the meantime Barry and JB wrote letters seeking funding for further equipment and making clear to everybody that would listen what the aims of the facility were. With the funding received, Barry purchased the music programme Fruity Loops, a microphone and a small PC. It’s rather amazing what happens when an idea starts to gather momentum, inmates donated unwanted keyboards, guitars etc and what cannot be underestimated is the fact that officers and inmates can work together to achieve a common goal as is stated by the studio’s motto of “Rehabilitation, Reintegration and Re-employment”. Barry and his team then developed a deliberately chosen logo, the leopard, because to their thinking most people believe a leopard cannot change its spots, however the founding members believe that given the right motivation, encouragement and being prepared to put in the time, effort and enthusiasm, anything can be accomplished. Other parties within the establishment soon became involved such as officer Chris Lee, S.O. Bob Booth and various aspects of Parkhurst’s senior management team who saw the potential and opportunities that could be gleaned. Barry, who knew very little about recording, then set about swotting up on his knowledge of equipment and a wish list was compiled between himself and JB. Bearing in mind there was some musical experience both academically and semi-professionally within the team it was quickly realised that the path forward should be some form of qualification and a solid mission statement. People also needed to have some sort of investment within the

studio so Barry cleverly decided to use the skills that various inmates had to design the logo and write a business plan. Slowly the studio started to build up a following and Barry approached a local singer/songwriter, Gareth Icke, to record a short album and a local sound engineer/ college lecturer Jason Payne to meet the team and give them some ‘on the job’ experience and to pass on knowledge. Since then a working partnership has been formed which in turn promotes the prison in a better light. Soon the leopard outgrew its spots and discussions started to move location and upgrade to a facility that could deliver courses and employ more inmates. After permission was sought and granted a new look studio was designed with purpose built live room, control room and education zone, all funded by the studio’s personnel; funds generated through donations and inmates purchasing copies of their work/material. Within a week and a half the partitions were up and inmates, some not

even connected to the studio, gave up their time to plaster and paint. Word spread around the prison and community about the studio and although met by the usual prison scepticism there have been many applications and enquiries. The studio is now open every day and run by Barry, a team of five inmates, JB, KO, Matrix, Boxer and Danny R and Officer Chris Lee. A course, Sound and Audio Recording Tech-

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When I visited the studio I was initially struck by three things. Firstly the vibrant colour scheme and amazing graphics on the walls, the enthusiasm of Barry and his team within the studio and the fact that everyone was working and nobody went quiet just because an officer walked in. I sat back in the control room taking in and appreciating the sophisticated computerised equipment and mixing deck. To any untrained eye this was equipment which wouldn’t have looked out of place on a modern aircraft flight deck. Through the control room window I could see the live room with a full setup and two inmates, one singing soulfully and the other expertly strumming a guitar whilst the engineer made final tweaks to the sound that would be recorded. Through the technical jargon bouncing about one thought struck me, through sheer hard work and determination Barry had enabled these inmates to work towards and achieve ‘Changing Their Spots’.

Any enquiries, Officer Barry Donovan can be contacted at HMP Isle of Wight, Parkhurst, Clissold Rd, Newport, Isle of Wight, Po30 5nx

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Stay in touch this Christmas Christmas can be a difficult time in prison. Being away from your family and friends at a time when you know they’ll be celebrating can cause emotional distress for prisoners and for their loved ones at home, whilst spending more time in your cell can increase feelings of boredom and isolation This Christmas, National Prison Radio brings you a whole host of special festive programmes, tips for staying positive and launches a brand new online service helping you to keep in touch with loved ones at home... Getting through the Christmas period National Prison Radio presenter Jay is also a Listener at HMP Brixton. Here are Jay’s top tips for staying upbeat over the festive period... • Keep busy – why not take up a new hobby while you have more time in your cell, like matchstick work, drawing or getting in to a good book? The NPR Book Club airs every Monday – Saturday at 22.30 and there are even free books on offer if you write to NPR. And speak to prison staff to find out if your prison has any additional activities for the Christmas period. • Relax with festive TV and radio – the options on TV are often more varied over Christmas and New Year, with more films available to take your mind off things. NPR will have regular updates on the best films to look out for over the festive period. If TV’s not your thing, NPR has plenty of special programming looking back at some of the best bits of 2011 and representing jails across England and Wales – check out the Christmas schedule for more information. • Write letters home – Christmas, for many people, is a time for families and just because you can’t be with them, it doesn’t mean you can’t tell them how much they mean to you. Try writing a letter, sending a drawing or even a card (available through prison canteens). Every night at 23.00, NPR’s The Love Bug plays back-to-back love songs and tips to inspire your letter-writing.

• Speak to a Listener – if you are upset or lonely and need someone to talk to, you could ask to speak to a Listener. Listeners are on-call 24/7 and trained by the Samaritans to support you through difficult times. Everything you say to them will be kept completely confidential. To speak to a Listener, ask your landing officer or any member of staff. Staying in touch with home with nationalprisonradio.com National Prison Radio’s most popular show is The Request Show, every Monday – Friday at 18.00. For some time, listeners have been asking NPR if their friends and family members could also send in requests, and now this is easier than ever. This Christmas, NPR launches a brand new show playing songs and messages of support from your loved ones on the road. Here’s what you need to do... 1. Tell your friend or relative to go online to nationalprisonradio.com 2. They simply fill out the online form, giving their name and email address, your name, prison number and location, and the song and message they’d like to be played* 3. Then listen out for your request on Christmas Day and throughout the week between Christmas and New Year – see the schedule for more details... *Though we hope to be able to play all requests, we reserve the right to decline to do so for any reason and inclusion of a song or message is not guaranteed. We cannot play any music which we consider contains inappropriate content, glamorises violence or features offensive language. In order to ensure that your request is played over Christmas, please tell your family to submit their song by Monday 12 December at the latest.

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Christmas 2011: What’s on National Prison Radio? In addition to normal schedule, check out the following special programmes over Christmas and New Year...

Christmas Eve: 17.00 Special festive edition of The Love Bug 18.00 Mariah Carey’s Merry Christmas album in full Christmas Day: 8.00 Porridge Quiz of the Year 9.00 Hear the Christmas service from HMP Brixton’s chapel 10.00 - 13.00 Special edition of The Request Show Songs and messages from your loved ones (repeated Boxing Day 14.00 - 17.00)

Mon 26 - Fri 30 December: 7.00 Special festive editions of Porridge 17.00 Hear the best bits from this year’s Behind Bars 18.00 All-new Soundclash editions of The Request Show Friday at 14.00 Brit 40 chart of the year New Year’s Eve - New Year’s Day: 21.00 - 00.00 Who will have the final request of 2011 in this extended edition of The Request Show...? Midnight See in 2012 with NPR presenters as they play their special mixes throughout the night Sunday at 17.00 The best of 2011’s NPR Book Club Film and TV Guides: TV guides every day at at 9:00, 11:00, 15:00, 17:00 and 20:00 Festive film guides daily at 10:00, 14:00, 18:00 and 21:00

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Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Prisoners punished for canteen boycotting John O’Connor says its cause and not effect which should be challenged

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ews that prisoners at Whitemoor have been disciplined for taking part in a canteen boycott when protesting against ever increasing prices highlights the growing difficulty of finding anything affordable on the weekly canteen sheet. Affordability is relative to ability to pay so prisoners relying solely on their meagre prison pay don’t stand much of a chance when scanning the canteen price list. That this protest action has reached a new and potentially dangerous level explains why prison managers appear to have come down hard on something which is actually in their power to resolve without penalising prisoners, for it is NOMS which determines what prices prisoners must pay for canteen items. But prisoners suffer a double whammy as a consequence of sky high canteen prices: they have to go without because goods are unaffordable, and risk disciplinary action when protesting over their un-affordability. It’s a no win situation. But the notion that these prisoners were disciplined just because they boycotted the canteen would be too simplistic a cause-and-effect linkage. Instead, it is the implication of anything being organised by prisoners which is the real reason for coming down heavily on them. For organised protest action is what prison managers fear most. Managers don’t need reminding of the devastation which extreme forms of organised protest can inflict. Yet these consequences were more often than not never envisaged; they happen when protests get out of control after developing a momentum of their own. Perhaps the most devastating instance of this in modern times was what became known as the Strangeways Riots of two decades ago. They kicked off at the eponymous Manchester prison in protest over a variety of well founded complaints (see resultant seminal Woolf and Tumin reports for confirmation) and within days this riot spread like wildfire to other prisons. Although the brutal and bloody outcome brought about much needed and long overdue improvements in the way prisons operate, it was at a cost of several lives and many millions of pounds when rebuilding wrecked prisons. So it’s against this background of what initially appears a mild protest

Managers within NOMS appear oblivious to the fact that presently all consumers of goods and services (and they include prisoners) are facing the biggest squeeze on the cost of living since the 1920s. Yet these managers awareness of competitive pricing structures and how to attract customers borders on the totally inept. For instance, recently when announcing price reductions on already grossly over-priced fire resistant bedding, it knocked 21p off an item costing £10.20. Yes, a magnificent 21p! I bet this item sold like hot cakes as a result, such was the overwhelming irresistibility of so massive a price reduction. If this example is anything to go by, by the sound of things the NOMS controlled canteen pricing structure is decided by a bunch of happy amateurs rather than by people with any real knowledge of a large scale professional retail operation.

A record 40% of the average shopping basket “ is now on special offer, up from an historical average of 25% as shoppers hunt for bargains. Prisoners don’t have this option



action can result in being severely punished when attempting to nip it in the bud. I will never condone violence in any form, be it inflicted by prisoners or prison officers, but I do utterly condemn failure to respond to clear danger signals possibly resulting in violence. (Admittedly, some people will do all they can to encourage violence if only to confirm the danger of cost cutting reductions in uniformed staffing levels.) But penalising prisoners following a peaceful protest only stores problems for the future. The Prison Service operates most of the time in a reality vacuum of its own creation? What is regarded as normal beyond the walls of a prison is often deemed exceptional by prison managers. So as far as canteen prices are concerned these managers apparently believe prisoners are unaffected by their upward spiral and so they don’t need to respond to customers’ increasingly limited spending ability in the same way as most

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shops have already done so on the ‘outside’. For it seems prison managers become detached from reality the moment they enter their workplace. How otherwise can this explain their failure to recognise that prisoners are facing the same pressures on prices as everyone else? Screaming newspaper headlines proclaim the price war which has broken-out amongst all the leading High Street shops and supermarkets. ‘Grab a trolley, the food price war is on’ (Sunday Times), ‘Tesco to start new battle in cut price war’ (The Times), ‘Tesco declares war on rivals in £500m price cut offensive’ (Guardian). These headlines speak for themselves when confirming retailers’ response to their customers shrinking purses and wallets. But what of the response by the Prison Service and in particular its specialist retailing staff within NOMS? These surely are the people with their fingers on the pulse of their customers’ needs and ability to pay for them. Or are they?

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It’s this professional ability which is key to survival on the High Street. This is why cash strapped shoppers are reaping the benefits of the price war which has broken out amongst all the supermarket chains irrespective of their size or share of the total market. Customers are trying to compensate for food prices which are 6.2% higher than a year ago. Inflation at this rate has left the average family £11 worse off a week, according to Asda’s Income Tracker. What these High Street competitors have in common is the route they have taken when reducing their prices. For a record 40% of the average shopping basket is now on special offer, up from an historical average of 25% as shoppers hunt for bargains. Prisoners don’t have this option. More and more shoppers are turning to Aldi and Lidl who both report sales growing more than twice as fast as their rivals while Morrisons, Britain’s fourth biggest supermarket group, noted an emergence of a new breed of ‘professional shopper’, with half of its customers checking the price of every item they put into their shopping basket. And what about the smaller operators such as Budgen and Somerfield whose prices are claimed to be comparable with those on our canteen sheets? Has their pricing strategy remained unchanged, unaffected by their bigger competitors’ price cutting antics? Hardly. For to remain in

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Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org business Budgen and Somerfield have had to respond accordingly. But why should NOMS lose a moment’s sleep over what other retail operators are doing? After all, there’s no competition to worry about; truly a captive market! The Booker/DHL operator is told by NOMS what prices to charge when maximising profit margins on prisoners’ canteen purchases. To achieve this NOMS strategy is to sell mainly nationally branded high margin goods with a few own label economy items added. NOMS claims it has to charge the recommended retail price (RRP). This is nonsense, for unlike the notorious retail price maintenance, previously enforcible by law, no such compunction exists for RRP items. RRP is being used as a fig leaf when justifying the rip off prices which are the dominant feature of our canteen list. Enforcing RRP is both a lazy and dishonest justification for unnecessarily high prices. They are unnecessary because unlike High Street operators NOMS doesn’t incur a fraction of the usual retailing costs. NOMS has no shops in prime locations commanding high rents or business rates; neither does it have the normal distribution costs when getting goods to prisoners. But the greatest cost saving is surely that on wages. With prisoners doing the bulk of order processing and packaging, the most they can earn in a week is the equivalent to just four times the minimum hourly wage on the ‘outside’. This is just one morning’s pay for a supermarket checkout girl. So what does it take before NOMS finally recognises that its increasingly unaffordable canteen pricing structure cannot remain unchanged? For it does seem extraordinary that it doesn’t appear to have made any attempt so far to reach out to its customers when responding to their rapidly diminishing spending power. NOMS enjoys a monopoly position which, by all accounts, it appears hell bent on exploiting to the hilt. For instance, prisoners at Whatton have been told that they

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cannot purchase elsewhere items listed on their canteen sheet. So if they want to buy a set of earphones they are restricted to the sole pair listed on the current canteen sheet. The same restriction applies to wrist watches. Does this restriction on choice and supplier foretell a long term strategy of restricting all purchases by prisoners to the canteen sheet? So will it soon be ‘goodbye’ to choice of supplier for trainers, clothing, vitamin supplements, etc? Reputable suppliers such as Argos, M&M, Holland & Barrett are going to be feeling the pinch as much as prisoners are already. If unceasing price rises combined with a new restriction on choice are going to be the future for the NOMS canteen operation, then passive forms of resistance are going to occur more often. But don’t for a moment believe that boycotts are a futile form of protest. If they were then prisoners at Whitemoor wouldn’t have been penalised in the first place. In fact, boycotts can be very effective. As far back as classical Greece, the legendary Lysistrata was (successfully) urging the women of Athens to withhold their feminine favours until their men folk ended their warring ways with neighbouring city states. In modern history Ghandi used boycotts as an effective weapon against the British Raj in India. The anti-Apartheid boycotts in many countries, particularly Britain, brought an end to state sponsored racialism in South Africa as did the anti segregation boycott led by Martin Luther King, but at the cost of his life when victim of a madman’s bullet. These boycotts resulted in people and organisations resisting them being held accountable for actions and decisions which were wholly unacceptable. Hopefully, the boycott action by prisoners at Whitemoor will result in necessary and long overdue changes in the way NOMS presently fails to meet the legitimate needs of prisoners at prices they can afford. John O’Connor is a resident at HMP Whatton

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Jonathan King writes ...

I

remember my first Christmas in prison back in 2001, ten years ago. Belmarsh. No in-cell electricity back then; no TV; radio only after spending canteen earnings on batteries which expired incredibly fast. Thank heavens for a friend who had sent me in the three novel set of His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman.

I lost a friend recently who was a really genuine human being - Jimmy Savile (pictured). Aged 84 (none of us knew his real age until he died), I once spent a day with him at Stoke Mandeville hospital for spinal injuries and watched faces light up as he arrived at bedsides.

Made my season. I spent most of the holiday reading and entering Pullman’s magnificent alternative world. But the staff made a big effort. A decent meal for a change (the food at Belmarsh was generally dreadful then). Officers gave up their holiday without extra pay and our doors were open all day long. We really appreciated it. I’d come from almost 50 years in the media and joked that I was now mixing with a far superior morality in jail. This year, a decade later, my jokey comment has been illustrated as absolutely true - we’ve discovered journalists routinely hacked the phones of dead teenagers amongst others. There was absolutely no limit to the depths to which many media people would sink - then and now. I really liked many of my fellow inmates. Those guilty of some appalling crimes were fascinating, in that they had rejected society but, of course, as we all know, human beings are complex characters and those with very bad sides often have equally strong good ones. Those innocent were suffering incredible injustice and frequently coping with amazing courage. My respect for police officers, lawyers and CPS people sank. My opinion of prison staff and criminals rose. This is a very difficult time of year for those with families and friends outside. Indeed one of the most affected was someone who missed their pet dog and knew they would probably never see him again. And I witnessed the decency and kindness of strangers who tried hard to make the lives of inmates better - chaplains, visitors, health care… I’m not religious but I respect the beliefs of others.

Another person I was privileged to meet was Lord Longford (pictured) - who started the New Bridge Foundation 55 years ago (parent body of Inside Time). Into his 90s he still devoted his time to prison visits, Christmas included. A truly decent man. They both knew that the best gift you can ever receive is the satisfaction of knowing you have improved someone else’s life. It may appear unselfish but it’s not. And it has nothing to do with religion. The greatest reward for kindness to another is the present of gratitude they give back to you. It lit up Jimmy’s life when someone stopped being miserable because he bothered to take an interest in them. And, after hospital, the best place for that is in prison. So can I urge you to make someone else’s life a little happier this Christmas? Select a person you really don’t like (and I noticed that’s often not related to their crimes but to more mundane faults - lack of personal hygiene being Number One in my experience). And try to talk to them, listen to them, be genuinely interested in them, make them smile, help them solve their problems, cheer them up, give them your time and your genuine concern. Be they fellow prisoner or prison officer, governor or cell mate. You’ll find they will be incredibly grateful but, more than that, your Christmas will be much happier too.

EBR

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28

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

‘Recruit for attitude, train for skills’ Richard Goss from CfBT Education Trust summarises a new Report looking into employers’ perception of ex-prisoners and what can be done to help them find employment



Work experience in prison shows willing, they have thought about what they want to do once they are released from prison. It makes you think that when they have committed to undertaking a work placement they are more likely in the future to be committed to you and your organisation Office Manager / Policy Officer, small charity

Richard Goss

M

ost offenders end up returning to prison within a year of their release. Securing employment after completing a sentence is widely recognised as having a strong, positive influence on individuals and contributing to reduced levels of re-offending. Having a criminal record is a significant barrier in the hunt for employment after prison; with 2.7 million people currently unemployed in the UK this challenge to find work is all the more difficult at the moment. In this recession young people appear to have been hardest hit with 1 million of those unemployed under the age of 25. A quarter of all young men under the age of 25 are currently out of work, and an even higher proportion of young men who have left prison. New research from CfBT Education Trust shows that there are still a number of employers who say that nothing could persuade them to hire an ex-offender, with three in ten believing that it is ‘more hassle than it is worth’. However, the report also showed that 30% of employers surveyed had taken on an exoffender previously with more than half of employers agreeing that they have a role to play in reintegrating ex-offenders; positive signs for ex-offenders worried about finding employment after prison.



Hiring ex-offenders is definitely something I would want to look into and encourage any employer to look into because I think culturally and socially it is the right thing to do Senior Manager, Banking



Of those employers who have experience of employing an ex-offender only 17% rated





There was a chap who had a personal reference from a prison guard. He was in charge of him at the time, same as a boss. So I didn’t view the reference any different Manager, Waste management



their experience of working with that individual as negative, with a majority of 58% rating their experiences as positive. The research went on to explore what employers were looking for when hiring new recruits in general, and their perceptions of whether exoffenders had the skills necessary to compete in the jobs market. Although employers want skills and experience, the adage “Recruit for attitude, train for skills” still rings true. For 44% of respondents the most important skill or attribute that potential applicants most needed to demonstrate was a positive attitude. Employers tend to distinguish employability or “soft” skills, like good communication, literacy, numeracy and team working skills, which are useful in nearly every job, from the specific or technical skills needed for their particular industry. Nearly all employers want candidates with key employability or soft skills. Around 30% of employers however said they would not employ an ex-offender, however good their skills and attitude, as they feared the effect on their other staff and on their customers. Other employers said it depended on the crime, and on the job role. The types of roles that employers were most confident in

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Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Take a chance on me

The challenges to prisoners finding work on release should not be underestimated, says Mark Day

PRISON REFORM TRUST

“E

verybody deserves a second chance,” said Sir Richard Branson in a recent Guardian interview, when asked why he was backing calls to encourage more employers to give jobs to former offenders. Companies such as Branson’s Virgin Group, Marks & Spencer, Timpson and National Grid, who have taken a lead on employing more people with a criminal record, value the contribution former offenders make in the workplace.

A recent YouGov poll of employers for the CfBT Education Trust found that, of the 31% of people surveyed who had previously given jobs to former offenders, more than half (54%) viewed the experience as positive. Most companies, however, will dismiss a candidate with a criminal record before they even make it to interview. A separate 2005 survey by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development showed that more than six out of 10 employers deliberately exclude people with a criminal record when recruiting. The impact of the economic downturn and increased competition for jobs means the current picture is likely to be worse. The success of the government’s “rehabilitation revolution” depends on getting more former offenders into work. People who have problems with employment and accommodation on release from prison have a reoffending rate of 74% during the year after custody, compared to 43% with a job and place to live. Existing law intended to assist former offenders finding work often does more harm than good. The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act sets out the periods where ex-offenders do not have to declare spent convictions when they are applying for jobs, except in sensitive areas of work, such as criminal justice agencies, financial institu-

tions and work with young people or vulnerable adults. The act is arcane and complex and long overdue for reform. Of particular concern is the double punishment inflicted by excessively long periods when former offenders have to declare their convictions. Under the current provisions, an adult who had been sentenced to less than six months in prison would see their conviction become “spent” after seven years. An adult who had been sentenced to between six months and 30 months in prison would not see their conviction become “spent” until 10 years after conviction. For those under-18, the “rehabilitation period” is half that of adults. Offenders serving sentences of over 30 months are not covered by the act, meaning they never have the opportunity to put their past behind them. After years of delay, reform of the legislation is at long last on the government’s agenda. Last month, in the House of Lords second reading debate on the legal aid, sentencing and punishment of offenders bill, the justice minister Lord McNally disclosed that the government would introduce changes to the act to achieve the right balance between the need to protect the public while removing “unnecessary barriers” that stop reformed offenders contributing to society. With another recession looming, the challenges facing former offenders finding work should not be underestimated. But at least now they can look forward to the prospect if a more level playing field. Mark Day is Head of Policy and Communications at the Prison Reform Trust

If you need advice, please get in contact. You can telephone us on 0808 802 0060 on Mondays 3.30-7.30pm or Tuesdays and Thursdays, 3.30-5.50pm. You can write to us at PRT, Freepost, ND6125, London EC1B 1PN.

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29

Ben’s Blog Lifer Ben Gunn’s Prison Blog … the only blog by a serving British prisoner which ‘looks stupidity and ignorance in the eye whilst attempting to inject some neurons into the criminological debate’. Shared Beliefs November 15 My broad view of prison managers is long established. It was a pleasure, then, to bump into a screw who shared my views. As he put it, “I’d be a governor but I’d have to walk around with fingers in my ears to stop my brain running out...”

What a Shambles That most toxic of combinations - media outrage and Government populism - has seen the lifer population leap from 3,600 to over 10,000. Given the short-term impulses that led to this situation, the long term consequences were carefully neglected. And this is now biting me in the ass like a starving snapper-turtle. Given that, at last, the forces that control my life appear to be content that I attain release, a swift move to open prison and a kindly Parole Board next year should have seen me off into the sunset. Alas, the open estate is choked. With over 10,000 Lifers - easily sentenced, less swiftly released -then the demand for places in Open were inevitably going to be excessive. Our political masters failed to plan for this. The result is that I am stuck: in a queue of over 300 Lifers all competing for a move to open conditions. The history of the Life sentence, its justification and criminological basis, is lengthy and convoluted. But never before has it come to pass that we can be told that we must remain in prison solely because the narrow path to release is oversubscribed.

..................................................... Time Travel November 16

Producing the blog, at my end, has taken on hints of time travel. For the first 18 months I resided in the 1970’s, using a word-processor. For the past 6 months I revisited the scholastic Middle Ages - pen and paper. Today, I have leapt forward

to the late 19th century having finally taken possession of a manual typewriter. I suspect that the average blogger doesn’t have this experience! And this ever shifting technology base has a real effect on my output. Writing by hand meant that the editor had to decipher and type my posts, a dedication that I could only repay by avoiding long posts. The typewriter will be a great help but I have to wonder if the prison service will ever allow me to use contemporary technology? Ed’s note: this is a great relief as his writing is terrible! I can now scan what he sends me into Word. A big thank you to the kind blog reader who donated the typewriter. (A collectors item!)

..................................................... Ingenuity November 19

The creation of a non-smoking prison on the Isle of Man has seen prisoners doing what we do best – using time and desperation to circumvent the restrictions placed upon us. In this care, the desperate locals have resorted to boiling nicotine patches to extract the ingredients to sate their hunger for a decent hit of nicotine. This enterprise pales into insignificance compared to a recent event here. A man managed to build a computer in his cell with illicit components. Never underestimate a prisoner with a lot of spare time...

..................................................... Taking the Temperature November 20

In a quiet moment the member of staff pointed out that it had been a peaceful few days across the prison. “That means either that there’s absolutely no drugs about, or a lot of drugs about...” Before the advent of heroin as a great force, it was a staff mantra that “a stoned prisoner is a happy prisoner”. The spliff may have been replaced by the needle, but not much ever changes.

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Comment

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

The 53rd letter by Jenny Richards - (Pseudonym of the wife of a Prisoner Maintaining Innocence)

Those who read “My 52nd Letter - and still no reply” in the August issue may like to know I wrote to my MP, telling him about the Ministry of Justice having failed to answer my letters. He wrote Jonathan Djanogly MP, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice. Eventually I received from my MP a copy of Mr Djanogly’s reply:

I was disappointed by this reply for a number of reasons. First, Mr Djanogly had replied to my MP rather than to me, so I have still not had a direct reply to all those letters I sent. Neither had I wanted an explanation of the Ministry’s (obviously flawed) ‘procedures for dealing with correspondence’. I did not ask, either, for the history of just one part of the law I had written about; the whole point of my letters was the gross injustice of those accused of this specific category of crime being the only ones having to prove their innocence. The Prosecution certainly does not have to prove guilt because, in cases of historic sexual allegations, this law allows conviction without proof. I have sent this reply to Mr Djanogly: I fully appreciate that it would not be “practical to reply to all 52 letters, and my per-

“Thank you for your letter of 18th August on behalf of your constituent whose husband is in prison. You raise with me her assertion that she has written to the Ministry of Justice on 52 occasions without even an acknowledgement. It may be helpful if I first explain briefly our procedures for dealing with correspondence. Clearly the public is entitled to expect the department to deal with its correspondence efficiently. Dealing repeatedly with the same correspondent on the same matter diverts scarce departmental resources from other correspondents who wish to draw matters to the Government’s attention. A person who raises the same subject more than once may receive a reply to a second letter, but there must soon come a point where it will be necessary to take the approach that, as the Government has already set out its position, no further reply will be sent to correspondence on substantively the same subject, and any such further correspondence received will simply be placed on file. The subject of her letters was the abolition by section 32 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 of certain requirements for corroboration evidence in criminal proceedings. I understand that, whilst copies of the replies in question do not appear to have been retained, according to department records, officials answered her letters on this particular subject in October 2010 and January 2011. A number of subsequent letters on the same subject have been placed on file in accordance with the procedure outlined above.

sistence was due not only to my deep concern on this subject but also to your lack of response. I am aware that many others have written to your department on this same subject, and that I am not the only one not to have had a reply. Your departmental records may show that they wrote to me twice, but I assure you that I received neither of the letters they claim to have sent. It is unfortunate copies are not available as I have a great interest in everything the government has to say on this subject. In your letter, when you explained Section 32 of the Criminal Justice & Public Order Act 1994, you omitted to mention Section 33 of the same Act. In Chapter 26 of ‘Rook and Ward on Sexual Offences - Law & Practice’ (4th edition, December 2010), it says “In 1994 Parliament removed the common law protection which was provided by the requirement

of corroboration in the case of allegations of sexual offences.” This refers to Section 33. You quite rightly say that the prosecution evidence may be limited to what the complainant says in the witness box. That is particularly true in claims of historic sexual abuse: in my husband’s case the allegations were made between 30 and 40 years after the offences were claimed to have been committed. I am astonished that you say “the oral evidence of a witness is, however, just as capable of providing proof as any other kind of evidence”. Uncorroborated oral evidence of alleged events which are claimed to have occurred decades earlier is a story against which there is no defence. The accused can only repeat, over and over, “I did not do it”. Prosecutors, on the other hand, have no difficulty in persuading juries to believe the story and to convict, and ‘Rook and Ward’ tell us “Judges are encouraged to direct juries in appropriate cases that late reporting does not necessarily mean that the allegation is false ...”. My husband was not proved guilty by the Prosecution; he is in prison because, like many others, he could not prove his innocence.



It was the last sentence in Mr Djanogly’s letter that proved, if proof was needed, that the Ministry of Justice is not concerned with justice. The ‘Letter A Week’ campaign must have had a huge number of letters sent to the Ministry of Justice about this iniquitous law. I urge you to do as I did - write to your MP and ask him/ her to contact Mr Djanogly for a reply. If we make enough noise, someone will hear us.

For your information, section 32 of the 1994 Act abolished the rule that a trial judge must warn the jury of the dangers of acting on the uncorroborated evidence of an alleged accomplice or victim of a sexual offence. However, the judge still retains the discretion to give such a warning to the jury where it seems advisable. The changes introduced in this area by the 1994 Act were only made after careful consideration. They were recommended in a Report of the Royal Commission on Criminal Justice in 1993, which in turn drew on a recommendation in a report by the Law Commission on “Corroboration Evidence in Criminal Trials”. The Law Commission report found the previous rules “inflexible, complex, productive of anomalies” and “inappropriate to the purpose they were intended to serve”. However both the Law Commission and the Royal Commission recognised that there would remain instances in which judicial warnings about unsupported evidence would be both necessary and appropriate. By virtue of the nature of sexual offences, the prosecution evidence may be limited to what the complainant says in the witness box. The oral evidence of a witness is, however, just as capable of providing proof as any other kind of evidence. Indeed, it is one of the best forms of evidence because it is subject to real-time cross-examination in the courtroom. There are no plans to change the law on this issue.”

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Psychology

q&A Our new regular feature in which Dr Peter Pratt, Consultant Clinical & Forensic Psychologist and Dr Terri Van-Leeson, Consultant Forensic Psychologist answer your questions on psychology. Please send your concise questions to Inside Time ‘Psychology’.

Q I write in reference to an answer you wrote to a question from a Mr. J. Fryer in the September issue of Inside Time. I am a posttariff mandatory lifer. It has been recently suggested to me that I should undergo a HCR-20 and dependent on the result, undertake the “Self Change Programme” (SCP). I am concerned I may be required to undertake the SCP regardless of need. Other than my index offence of murder, I have one other violent conviction for common assault. I was convicted of common assault at the age of 16, murder at 18 and have post convictions for a few assaults/fights in young offenders’ prisons. All of my violence occurred between the ages of 16 and 21 and none at all now for eleven years next month. I have not been involved in any violence since December 16th 1999. I have undertaken anger management, alcohol awareness (X2), drug courses, (X5) reasoning and rehabilitation, cognitive skills booster course, controlling anger and learning to manage it, SOTP core and SOTP extended. Do you think I would need the Self Change Programme? How can I transmit to any assessor the above information without seeming to manipulate the assessment? Any help or advice you could supply me with would be most appreciated.

A Another letter about the Self Change Programme! I note that you are concerned that you may not need to do this programme and naturally enough, I think, point to more than 10 years of not being violent, at least within a closed prison, and most certainly since you have moved into the adult prison estate.

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You might also point to the fact that you have done a number of the Accredited Courses e.g. CALM, Cognitive Skills Booster etc., and it would appear, on the basis of your lack of adjudications, that these courses have had the desired result. Perhaps another argument that you may want to tactfully present to the Assessor is that you are in a Cat C location. If you have continued to demonstrate SCP targets e.g. believing that violence is either an acceptable and necessary part of life and or that you are entitled to be violent in response to provocation and threats, then it is unlikely that you would find yourself happily ensconced in Devon. For my own part, I have never quite understood why such detailed and expensive Violence Reduction Programmes are offered to people in your position. As for whether you need to do this programme, there is, I regret to say, a clinical override i.e. that if your OGRS 3 score over two years is indeed below 75, there is still the possibility that based on the Clinical and Risk items of the HCR 20, you can be deemed to need the SCP. Unfortunately, as far as I know, there is no indication that the override can work the other way i.e. that if you meet all the criteria, then a Forensic Psychologist can apply the override and conclude that you do not need to do the Course after all! Lastly as far as managing the interaction with the Assessor, I realise that as a mandatory lifer, you will have regular access to an Oral Hearing in front of the Parole Board, and if you feel that you wish to challenge a local opinion, that you do need to do the SCP, then my advice is to discuss that matter with your Lawyer and prepare accordingly. As always, you most certainly need professional legal advice on this and perhaps, in due course, an independent report.

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Q Could you explain when ‘clinical override’ can be used if your OGRS3 score is below 75. Given that my previous HCR.20 stated I am unlikely to commit an offence high risk in nature and I don’t support the use of violence. A Thank you for raising the issue of the circumstances when a clinical override can be applied. This is, in my experience, at least a fairly new concept in that as the criteria for an accredited course become more explicit, possibly in order to manage the gulf between need and availability, and then there will be some cases where individuals, perhaps such as yourself, fall outside of the usual requirements. Nevertheless there may be other, very good, reasons to require engagement with an Accredited Programme. The key items on the HCR 20 are the five clinical items and the five risk items, but it is important to use those items to assess you as you are now, in other words to inform decision makers about how your risk can be managed, should you be released in the near future. I appreciate that your current location makes this perhaps somewhat unlikely but it seems that we are heading towards some sort of clash between two much used methods of risk assessment. In terms of saying that one is more valid than another, I think many of us would find ourselves in unchartered waters. It might help, of course, if your OGRS 3 score is way below 75, since that would make the ‘clinical override’ somewhat more contentious. I am sorry that I cannot be more definitive. As far as this whole issue is concerned, in my opinion, we are at a somewhat early stage.

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Psychology

If you have a question you would like answered please send to: ‘Psychology’, Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB.

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

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Thoughts for the day

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

From over the wall

The Book of Uncommon Prayer

Terry Waite writes his monthly column for Inside Time

My own experience as a hostage was not too comfortable either. I was in complete solitary, kept chained to the wall for most of the day, slept on the floor and had to wear a blindfold when anyone came into the room. That, coupled with a mock execution, torture and often being in a building under shell fire made life interesting to say the least! I had no contact with the outside world, no books for years and certainly no TV or radio. Many people have asked me how I managed to survive those years and emerge with reasonable sanity. Well, looking back I often wonder. First, I was totally determined to survive and realised that if I was to do that I had to keep as healthy as possible. Exercise was virtually out of the question as I was chained but I could do simple exercises that I remembered from books which informed pilots how to keep the circulation moving whilst confined to the cockpit. More importantly it was my mental attitude that needed attention. I had heard stories of people kept alone for years and when they emerged they had totally lost their sanity. I certainly did not want that to happen to me and so I set about doing mental exercises. At school I had never been good at maths but now I made myself do calculations in my head. Some of them went on for hours. Then I began to write. I had no pencil or paper but I wrote in my head. I thought out the story lines for many novels and began to write them mentally. My first book ‘Taken on Trust’ was written in my head during those years and published when I got out. Sometimes I would set out on an imaginary journey and make a list of all the things I might need to take with me. I would plot the route, stock the boat and make a conscious effort to remember. As for religious belief I have never regarded faith as

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ecember! The end of one year and the start of the next. The beginning of fresh ‘try agains’ and putting the past behind. It’s as though Christmas makes everyone feel that it’s possible to wave a magic wand and make it all right again, just like a plaster with special effects. Now I don’t know about you, but I find this rather difficult. In my experience, there are three ways to deal with things you wished you hadn’t done. The first is to pretend they never happened - rather like one of my creative writing students in prison who was in for a driving offence. Understandably, he couldn’t deal with the mental consequences of what had happened, so he just told himself that the accident had never taken place. I’ve tried this technique with some things I’d like to forget but found that however deep I’ve dug, the thing I tried to forget just wiggled its way up again – sometimes with even more force than before because I hadn’t allowed myself time to deal with it.

Terry Waite - Taken on Trust, Published by Coronet £5.99

The second way of dealing with the past is to allow it to cripple you. You might have seen the signs in yourself or others. It bends your back and it bends your mind because that’s the only thing you can think of, day and night. But although it’s important – at least in my book – to feel sorry for what you’ve done, it’s not going to help anyone to get stuck. I’ve

Terry Waite was a successful hostage negotiator before he himself was held captive in Beirut between 1987 and 1991 (more than 20 years ago). He was held captive for 1763 days; the first four years of which were spent in solitary confinement.

insidetime January

Year Planner 2012

›› insidetime - the National Monthly Newspaper for Prisoners ›› insidepoetry - Poetry from people in prison ›› insideinformation - the Comprehensive Guidebook to Prisons & Prison Related Services ›› www.insidetime.org

February

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I never thought of losing, but now that it’s happened, the only thing is to do it right. That’s my obligation to all the people who believe in me. We all have to take defeats in life

” Muhammad Ali

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I should be happy and I’m a little annoyed but that gives me things to work on



Paula-Radcliffe





With so many people saying it couldn’t be done, all it takes is an imagination

You don’t fear for your life in the middle of a storm, you can’t really afford to

Michael Phelps

Ellen MacArthur

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We do this because we know there something greater than us. It inspires us spiritually. We start going down hill, when Laird Hamilton we stop taking risks

driving it by a kind of instinct, only I was Ayrton Senna in a different dimension



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insideinformation

... the comprehensive guidebook to prisons and prison related services. Containing in depth information on hundreds of support organisations.

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Published by insidetime - the National Newspaper for Prisoners www.insidetime.org

Well compared to some prisons around the world British prisons are not too bad. I recollect visiting a prison in the former Soviet Union where conditions were truly terrible. People were thrown together in huge dormitory blocks and had to find their own place in the hierarchy of the establishment. Abuse of one kind or another was rife and the guards kept their distance only making an appearance to leave food or to sort out a fight that had gone too far for comfort.

Jane Bidder former writer in residence of HMP Grendon/Springhill

No one in a British Prison is likely to face the deprivations that I had to face during those long years. However, let me give you a tip. Don’t see your time inside as a total disaster. OK it may be difficult but it need not be totally destructive of your life. Within the experience somewhere there will be an opportunity to turn it round in a creative way. Perhaps in education classes or discovering talents that you never knew you had. The annual Koestler exhibition shows clearly what a wealth of talent there is within the prisons of the UK. Prison, despite all the restrictions will present many with new opportunities. They won’t come easily but if you can seize them then you could look back on your time inside and realise that it was a stepping stone to a much fuller appreciation of life in all its glory.

the Comprehensive Guide to Prisons & Prison Related Services

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ecently I took a friend who had never been inside a prison before on a brief visit. We went on one of the wings and she was shown one of the cells. The cell had been made as attractive as possible by the prisoner but afterwards my friend remarked that she had not appreciated just how difficult it must be to spend hours locked into such a confined space. She had been fed stories that so often appear in the popular press about an easy life in prison but soon discovered during the visit that it was far from that.

insideinformation

Terry Waite CBE

an insurance policy for I believe that we have to take responsibility for our own actions and face the consequences pleasant or unpleasant. However, my faith helped me believe that I would not be ultimately destroyed come what may and that was a way of helping me keep hope alive. That is the key - hope. If you can keep that spark of hope alive within then it is possible to put up with a great deal.

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done that one too, by the way. The third is to face the facts. Say sorry. Accept apologies from those who’ve hurt you. And then start walking – mentally speaking. But it makes it easier if you have a walking stick – and that’s where a bit of spiritual help comes in. It doesn’t have to mean going to church if you’re not that way inclined. It can be a kind word from a friend. Or a spiritual saying that helps. When my mother died, she left me a poem. I don’t know who wrote it but the words have helped over the years. ‘Weeping for the past is useless. Weeping for the present, only clouds our eyes so we see less clearly into the future.’ In other words, crying won’t help us keep a clear head. Instead, we need to be strong and focussed. This is my last Monthly Meditations column. Thank you very much for your feedback over the year. Regular readers will know that we always print a prayer or spiritual saying from ‘The Book of Uncommon Prayer’ which was written by my students at HMP Springhill and Grendon. Below is a contribution by Christopher, who is a Buddhist.

“No matter what obstacles are put in your way, always stay positive and focussed” (Christopher’s note: My prayers are more of an internal thing: it’s not like you’re praying to a God or anything. It’s like an inner strength within.)

If you would like to order a copy of The Book Of Uncommon Prayer, send a cheque for £6.98, payable to New Leaf Publishing and post to Anne Chester, 5 Wardley Rd, Walton, Warrington, Cheshire WA4 6JA

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PSI Updates

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

PSI 2011-029 - Annex D

Prisoner Communication Services

Further guidance on the handling arrangements for prisoners’ legal and confidential access correspondence Issued: 26 September 2011, Effective from 1 October 2011, Expires: 18 September 2015 There are constant complaints from prisoners about interference with their legal mail. The new PSI clarifies a number of important points. The PSI covers all correspondence and telephone calls.

PSI

updates All instructions to prisons are now produced as Prison Service Instructions. They have a specific start and ending date and are gradually replacing old PSIs and PSOs. PSIs are only relevant to prisons in England and Wales. Copies of all PSIs are available in every prison library. Paul Sullivan reviews some of the latest PSIs and explains their relevance to prisoners and what each contains.

Paul Sullivan

Annex D provides detailed guidance on the handling arrangements for legal and confidential access correspondence between prisoners and their legal advisers, and with the courts, covered by Prison Rules 35A & 39 and YOI Rules 11 & 17 and applies to all prisoners, including Category A, young offenders and remand prisoners. All correspondence, including legally privileged documents/material which is handed over during the course of a legal visit, between prisoners, their legal advisers and the Courts (including the European Courts) must be treated as privileged. Such material cannot be opened, read or stopped except in the specific circumstances set out in Rules 35A and YOI Rules 11. All correspondence sent by ‘Confidential Access must be given the same degree of confidentiality. The PSI tells governors ‘There must be strict compliance with the rules regarding privileged and confidential mail. Any breach, even if accidental, is likely to lead to legal challenge in both the domestic and international courts. Governors should ensure that the guidance contained in this annex is brought to the attention of all staff that process prisoners’ correspondence and take the necessary steps to ensure that the confidentiality of prisoners’ correspondence under these provisions is maintained at all times. Governors should pay particular regard to ensuring that there are sufficient safeguards to avoid the possibility of such correspondence being opened inadvertently.’

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Outgoing Correspondence Correspondence addressed to legal advisers, or to any Court can be handed in sealed for despatch, provided that the words “Prison Rule 39” or “YOI Rule 17” and the prisoner’s name are written on the back of the envelope. Non-legal letters sent by Confidential Access should be marked “Confidential Access”. Where correspondence is addressed to a recognisable legal adviser or body to whom confidential access status applies and is not properly marked it should be treated in exactly the same way as if it were properly marked and sealed. ‘A legal adviser will usually be identifiable from the name and address of a sole practitioner or firm of practitioners, but may also for example be employed by another advisory body such as the Prisoners’ Advice Service, Liberty or Citizen’s Advice Bureau or may even practice from their home address.’ An Officer can consider whether any examination for illicit enclosures is necessary. An “illicit enclosure” is defined in the Prison Rule 39(6) as including any article possession of which has not been authorised in accordance with Prison Rules, however prisoners may include relevant enclosures in Rule 39 mail to third parties e.g. to the Legal Services Commission that they wish their solicitor to transmit on their behalf. If there are reasonable grounds to suspect that a letter contains an illicit enclosure, the letter should be opened in the presence of the prisoner unless that prisoner declines the opportunity to be present (in which case the prisoner should be asked to sign a waiver). Where an illicit enclosure has been removed from a letter, the prisoner must be informed. He or she should then be provided with another envelope in which to place the correspondence, minus the removed illicit enclosure. The prisoner should be asked to address it to the legal adviser and seal it in the presence of a member of staff, ready for despatch. The cor-

   

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respondence officer must not read the letter. The decision and the reasons for examining the correspondence must be recorded clearly on the prisoner’s record. Incoming Correspondence Incoming correspondence should be in a double envelope enclosing a letter sealed in an unstamped envelope, the outside of which will have the prisoner’s name and prison number (if known); the name, address and telephone number of the law firm and a reference number; the words “Prison Rule 39” or “YOI Rule 17”; and the signature of the legal adviser or his or her clerk (or appropriate official in the case of confidential access correspondence). Alternatively, this information may be given in a covering letter to the Governor. If due to oversight or lack of awareness by the author, an incoming letter may not be clearly marked in this way but appears to come from a legal adviser or from an organisation entitled to confidential access, it should be treated in exactly the same way as if it were properly marked. Where it is believed the letter has not originated from a genuine source, the prison should check directly with the firm or body or individual concerned. Special Instructions for reading legal correspondence The reading of a prisoner’s correspondence to or from a legal adviser is permitted only in exceptional circumstances; where the governor has reasonable cause to believe that the contents of the letter would endanger prison security or the safety of others or are otherwise of a criminal nature. The decision to read correspondence must be taken by the Governor personally on a case by case basis and must be taken in relation to a particular item of correspondence. Blanket reading in respect of all prisoners or any class of prisoners in any establishment is not allowed or opening/ reading all correspondence to or from a particular source.

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Family Welfare

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Families ‘troubled’ Diane Curry OBE encourages the government to ‘think family’ their approach and delivery. But if we are really to believe in the conviction that appears to lie behind such policy lines we need to see this attitude reflected across the development of all government policy whether it relates to families directly or indirectly.

by Diane Curry OBE Director, POPS

T

here has been a lot of commentary and discussion in recent months about disadvantaged or ‘troubled’ families, particularly in the wake of the riots in August with the cause of the civil disturbances being widely debated and parenting in particular coming under the spotlight. But what of those families to whom disadvantage has been conferred, not by their social or economical circumstances, but instead by government policy? Family policy over the last year of the coalition government has really come to the fore with organisations and services being encouraged to become ‘family friendly’ in

Too often it is the families ‘under the radar’ that are affected, particularly offenders’ families, either as a direct result of their association with an offender or because the circumstances they find themselves in are simply not taken into account. As we all know much of government policy of late has focused on doing more for less, and wherever possible tightening the purse strings. And therein lays the challenge. Cuts in one area can end up simply transferring the financial strain elsewhere with significant yet hidden impact. One such example in which multiple and widespread issues were narrowly avoided occurred recently in the case of families supporting offenders subject to Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements or MAPPA. With Christmas approaching and the weather drawing in none of us like to consider the possibility of being made homeless but for many offenders cuts to housing benefit scheduled for January 2012 were threatening to place them on the street. Simply put the

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Police Station Assistance Magistrates Court Advocacy General/Complex Crown Court Cases Money Laundering Proceeds of Crime Act Fraud Customs & Excise

Other policies have been driven through without such consideration. Take the Prisoners Earnings Act. Whilst the idea in principle is commendable, the deduction of 40% of a

We must be vigorous in holding our government to account if offenders’ families are not to be disadvantaged further. If recent reports are to be believed it appears the government is considering the appointment of a specific advisor to assess all coalition policies for their impact upon women. If the government are serious in their commitment to bringing ‘troubled families’ out of disadvantage then they must also be committed to reducing the disadvantage they themselves bestow on families, ensuring that their work is as ‘family friendly’ as they are encouraging us to be. I doubt a single advisor is the answer but if they can encourage policy-makers to ‘think family’ then we are heading in the right direction. Offenders’ Families Helpline 0808 808 2003 Mon-Fri 9am-8pm, 10am-3pm Sat and Sun Partners of Prisoners 0161 702 1000 www.partnersofprisoners.co.uk Prison Chat UK on-line support service run by and for prisoners’s families www.prisonchatuk

Have you ever served in the Armed Forces? Do you or your partner need help? If the answer is yes, you may be entitled to assistance from The Royal British Legion and SSAFA Forces Help - two charities assisting the Service and ex-Service community, working together to reach all those eligible for assistance.

· · · · · · · · ·

• Life/IPP and Extended Sentence • Parole Board Reviews • Parole Appeals • Adjudications • Recall • Judicial Review • Sentence Planning • ROTL/HDC • Categorisation/Allocation/Transfer

Household goods Clothing Rent deposit guarantee Education and training courses, including distance learning Equipment and/or Work Tools Relocation Costs Advice and Guidance on getting a job or learning a trade Advice and Guidance on applying for a war pension A s s i s ta n c e f o r y o u r pa r t n e r a n d f a m i l y

Regretfully we cannot make cash grants. Nor can we offer legal or appeals advice.

If you would like further information, or a visit from one of our caseworkers to discuss assistance please write to:

A full range of translation service are available Please contact us for professional quality advice and representation

Cleveland & Co Solicitors 234/236 Whitechapel Road London E1 1BJ

The proposed extension of the Shared Accommodation Rate to single persons up to the age of 35 threatened to cause significant difficulties for this group of offenders who have often had to struggle to find accommodation in the first instance. Experiencing a reduction in housing benefit as a result of being generically assessed as suitable to share housing posed a potentially serious problem for offenders under MAPPA. And what are the consequences when a family member’s income is threatened and their housing situation precarious? A whole series of knock-on effects for their family. Faced with additional financial strain and the difficulties of finding suitable accommodation for a loved one many families would have been facing a very dismal Christmas indeed. Such stress does little to support the process of resettlement and places unwanted pressure on relationships which may have been fragile to begin with, undermining the potential of the family environment to have a positive impact on the offender and their likelihood of reoffending. Thankfully, a recent campaign by the homelessness charity Crisis achieved two exemptions to the cuts which included ‘ex-offenders who pose a risk to others’, reducing the risk of homelessness for people within this category and lessening the strain on their families. Crisis avoided, for the time being.

prisoner’s wages solely towards resolution neglects the challenges of rehabilitation and resettlement which after all is why the prisoner is engaged in work-based activities in the first place. If on the one hand we are attempting to encourage prisoners to take responsibility for their families but on the other removing the resource for them to practically do so we send a very mixed message. And whilst the whys and wherefores are debated, it is the families, often already placed at financial disadvantage through their relative’s imprisonment, who suffer further.

Whether you are still serving your sentence or are due for release, we may be able to provide financial support to you and your family.

Prison Law

Theo Rutstein or Alfred Nze at:

requirements some offenders are subject to under MAPPA, as a result of their potential risk to others, means it is inappropriate or prohibited for them to share accommodation.

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Or tell your partner to telephone Legionline on 08457 725 725 or SSAFA Forces Help on 020 7403 8773 or they can log on to w w w. b r i t i s h l e g i o n . o r g . u k o r w w w. s s a f a . o r g . u k

Family Welfare

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

£3.25) in the shape of a fan and attached them safely inside the cardboard Christmas hamper! How creative is that eh? I reckon the screws who have to check it out will be well impressed! My man says that Christmas inside is just another day. He wrote to me once saying that Mums have Mother’s Day, Dads have Father’s Day and there should be a day named solely for prisoners. I wrote back saying there is - it’s called Palm Sunday!

W

ell, it’s that time of year again, and folk are slowly but surely decorating their houses with festive lights and Christmas trees! My other half has made paper-chains from old back copies of Inside Time for the visitor’s centre, a miniature matchstick Christmas tree for the search area in prison, and a red nose for the drugs dog which he made out of a damaged ping pong ball from association. The lads on the wing put forward an idea that the sniffer dog should dress as Rudolph so as to not frighten the kids during searches. A very thoughtful and compassionate idea indeed, but I’m quite positive it would take more than a red ping pong ball to screw up the scent of a Springer Spaniel! Nice try lads but I’ll mark that down as a fail! Christmas can be depressing for prisoners and their families. It’s a case of mustering through it, but my other half seems to be in rather good spirits considering where he is. No one can change the situation, so it’s a case of carry on regardless. I’ve made him a Christmas hamper this year. What I’ve creatively done is, I’ve made a cardboard basket and painted it red. Inside it are Christmas goodies. There’s a postal order in it for 50p, with mince pie written on the top of it. Then there’s a postal order for £1.50, with a note attached saying selection box. Another is for the sum of 25p, with the words Christmas cracker on it. Last but not least is a postal order for £1.00 and that says Terry’s Chocolate Orange on it as I know those are his favourites. Or should I say used to be his favourites as it’s donkey’s years since he’s had one. I’ve then arranged the postal orders (totalling

I was chatting to a neighbour the other day who is single. She was saying that she wants a knight in shining armour for Christmas. The nearest thing she will get to that is a kn*b-head in tin foil. Our district doesn’t do knights! Most don’t even know what a knight is! I asked one of the residents last week if she was having a joint for Christmas dinner this year instead of Turkey. She replied, “ It depends on whether my Mum buys me a new bong!” I quickly changed the subject to something I was pretty sure she’d understand by then asking her whether she watches the Queen’s speech on Christmas Day. She said that she wasn’t really into Alan Carr, and that her family usually have music on instead of the television. So if you need to give a thought to someone this Christmas, give a thought to me, Prison Widow, who has to endure living amongst the educated! On that note, I would like to offer each and everyone one of you all the best and my thoughts go out to you and your families this Christmas. Take care and I’ll see you all in the New Year!

RECENT ACCIDENT?

Shaw & Co

by a Prison Widow

Tis the season to be jolly, so I thought I’d take this opportunity to give you all a tour of where I live. Christmas lights aside, the place is certainly a colourful one! The estate has even got its own satellite navigation device because the area is difficult to locate. It’s called the ‘Prat Nav’. If you purchase one of these, you will find us almost immediately. The Prat Nav voice will say: “ Turn left at the lights past a group of chavs in dressing gowns fagging it and drinking cups of tea at their front doors. Continue for hundred yards until you see a Police van. Turn right and pass the community support officer and do a sharp left when you see a green limo – aka a pimped up shed. The Prat Nav will then tell you that you have reached your location. Whether you want to stay at the desired location is up to you. Nevertheless, it is an experience.

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Prisoners Families Voices prisonersfamiliesvoices. blogspot.com Dad won’t be home for Xmas by Emms- 5 November

My son is only 8 and he keeps saying he doesn’t want anything for Christmas this year because his Dad won’t be with us. My partner (his Dad) was given an IPP sentence last year and this is the first Christmas without him. I know many prisoners families feel the same way about Christmas and I’m dreading it, but I have to do my best for my son. Are there any other parents out there in my situation who can offer me some advice on how to make his Christmas a little easier and most importantly enjoyable?

....................................................... I do not feel sorry for my partner in prison by Emms- 5 November

First of all, can I just say how much I enjoy reading your blog. My partner is inside and he deserves to be there. What annoys me is when people start feeling sorry for those who deserve to be in prison! Commit a crime and face the bloody punishment! Simple as that! It confuses me when wife’s and girlfriends slag off the system 24/7. Yes, the system isn’t great and could be improved. But my man is in prison because he chose to commit a crime and more fool him. Yes I am standing by him and luckily we have no children because those inside who are mum’s and dad’s should smell the bloody coffee and realise what the hell they have done to them!

....................................................... Because I love him by Anoni - 8 November

”I’m standing by him because I love him.” I hear those words a lot on prison visits. I believe the women who say those words too. But I often think about their partners in prison. Is the love there for the women who travel for hours to see them week in and week out? I’m not judging anyone here, far from it. I’m just weighing up the situation because I’m struggling to understand it. I queue to visit my man like the rest of the families on prison visit day. Some of whom I speak to outside the visitors centre when I go for a crafty cigarette. One girl in particular always seems to pull on my

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heartstrings. Sometimes I feel like putting her in a bag and shaking her up - but I can’t judge, because I have a partner in prison too. The girl is quite young. In fact, I’m old enough to be her mother! She always looks stressed and tired. But who wouldn’t having to occupy a toddler whilst waiting to see our loved ones. The wait itself is enough to drive adults around the bend! She told me it was her boyfriends 4th time in prison. She also told me she doubts he will ever change. So my question was, “ So why stand by him if he isn’t prepared to change?” Her answer was, “ because I love him.” But does he love her? If he loves her, then why does he continue to offend? Why would he choose to be behind the Queens walls and not at home with his girl and his child? Is this a one way love thing? Because 4 times in prison tells me that the old saying, ‘learn by your mistakes’ hasn’t worked. I shouldn’t judge, but what happens if my old man re-offends? This is his first time in prison - hopefully the last because I am not enjoying this prison journey at all. If he chooses to go back to prison, then what respect has he got for me?

....................................................... Thanking our lucky stars by Angie - 21 November

I read the post about a little boy who wants his Dad home for Christmas. Christmas is particularly tough for families with a loved one in prison. Especially for children with a parent in prison. As adults, we muster through and make sure our children smile on Christmas Day. My daughter is 9 and her Dad has been in prison since she was 5 years old. Money is tight for many of us right now, but I always buy her a present from her Dad and make a big deal of it. It’s not an expensive gift, but to see her huge smile makes my day. Me and my partner also discuss what to buy her which makes him feel involved even if in a small way. Christmas is what we make it. It’s for the children and as long as they are happy, I’m happy. I take loads of photo’s and send them to her Dad and he writes her a special letter to open on Christmas Day. It can be an emotional occasion. But how many children won’t get a letter off their Dad’s this year (armed forces and 911 etc)? There will be plenty, so let us thank our lucky stars in that respect.

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News from the House

36

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Parliamentary Questions Highlights from the House of Commons number of prisons. We have also set up a Business Advisory Group to both advise and promote the outcomes we are seeking. These plans will require new businesses in prisons to cover their costs and the enhanced costs of undertaking work in prisons as well as providing a return for victims of crime and a contribution towards the rehabilitation of the prisoners engaged in this new commercially positive work.

Young Offenders: Drugs & Alcohol

Mrs Moon: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what estimate he has made of the number of people entering young offender institutions who have drug and alcohol problems. Mr Blunt: No estimate has been made because this information is not collected centrally. From April 2012, the National Drug Treatment Monitoring System (NDTMS) is being introduced into prisons and young offenders institutions in England. NDTMS will allow for accurate data to be collected from substance misuse services. Editorial Note: It is impossible to implement effective drug and alcohol programmes if the Secretary of State is unable to say how many people entering YOIs have a drug and alcohol addiction. In the Children and Young People in Custody 2010-11 Report just published by HM Inspectorate it states a third of young men and women reported having drug problems on arrival at the YOI.

Charities

Dr Whiteford: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what grants his Department made to charitable organisations in each of the last five years.

Eurozone Statement: MPs are responding to a Statement made by Chancellor George Osborne on the Eurozone.

Mr Djanogly: The Ministry of Justice funds a large number of groups, including registered charities, voluntary and community groups. It would incur disproportionate costs to research each organisation, check its charitable status and disclose what grants were given. Grants are given to organisations that provide a wide range of services, such as the provision of support for victims of crime, mediation services, work to reduce crime and debt advice.

Prison Work

Richard Harrington: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what plans he has to promote work in prisons. Mr Blunt: We have made clear our intention to make prisons places of work and industry. We are already making good progress towards longer prisoner working weeks at a

Jobs and Growth in the UK Economy: Economists say the economy is

growing at half the pace needed to keep unemployment stable.

Approximately 50 MPs (if that) are in the Chamber participating in each debate. The question is: where are the other 600?

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Editorial Note: If taxpayers’ money is being given to voluntary organisations to work in prisons and elsewhere taxpayers are entitled to know what grants are being made and how effective the work is that is being carried out. It is nonsense to claim that ‘it would incur disproportionate costs

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News from the House

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org to research each organisation and check its charitable status . . .’ That is done (we hope) before a grant is given.

Civil Disorder

Mr Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many and what proportion of people convicted following the public disorder of August 2011 were children; and what proportion had parents subject to parenting orders. Mr Blunt: The latest available published data, as of 12 October 2011, on offenders found guilty at all courts for offences relating to the public disorder between 6 and 9 August 2011, show that 185 offenders (27%) were aged between 10 and 17 years. In order to allow timely reporting of statistics on offenders proceeded against at the magistrates courts for offences resulting from the 6-9 August public disorder, a dataset has been compiled from manual returns from the courts. The available information does not include whether a parent of an offender found guilty of an offence related to the public disorder was subject to a parenting order.

Departmental Travel

Luciana Berger: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how much his Department has spent on first class travel by (a) air, (b) boat and (c) train since May 2010. Mr Kenneth Clarke: Since May 2010 the Ministry of Justice has spent the following on first class travel: (a) Air: £4,279; (b) Boat: nil; (c) Train: £889,138.

We have introduced a new travel and subsistence policy in April 2010 containing restrictions on using first class travel. However, the policy does recognise that in certain cases (e.g. when accompanying a Minister or where a member of staff has special needs) and with prior management approval, first class travel is undertaken.

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill An extract of the statement made in the House of Lords November 21st

Editorial Note: If train travel cost the Ministry of Justice alone almost £1 million a year it would probably be cheaper to buy the train!

Extradition Mr Raab: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what information his Department holds on how many extradition requests to the UK have been refused by a court under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights in each year since 2000. Mr Blunt: The Department does not compile information about requests for extradition of persons from the United Kingdom in a way that would permit the reasons for refusal to be ascertained to this level of detail. The information requested could therefore only be found by manual examination of case files, and would incur a disproportionate cost. Editorial Note: The PQ asks how many extradition requests to the UK have been refused. Mr Raab doesn’t ask for the ‘reasons’, although that is usually because of insufficient evidence provided to the Court by the foreign jurisdiction seeking to extradite an individual.

FIGHTING FOR YOU

37

The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice (Lord McNally): I can also announce today that the Government intend to introduce reforms to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, the outdated operation of which inhibits rehabilitation. We intend to bring forward amendments to achieve the right balance between the need to protect the public while removing unnecessary barriers that prevent reformed offenders contributing to society. We believe that punishment must be proportionate, flexible and productive, so let me turn to some of the key measures in the Bill which will ensure that. The first of the measures is greater discretion. We are legislating to provide more flexibility for judges and magistrates to sentence appropriately. The Bill is a first step to unpicking the labyrinth of legislation governing sentencing and creating a single framework for the release and recall of offenders. We are also proposing a simpler, clearer duty on the court to explain the sentence it passes, enabling it to be understood better. The Bill also introduces greater

flexibility and discretion by removing the so-called “escalator principle” of out-ofcourt disposals for under-18s, which forces young people arbitrarily into the criminal justice system, regardless of the nature of their offending. In this area of youth justice reform, we are also undertaking the important step of treating 17 year-olds as children for remand purposes, and giving “looked-after child” status to all young people aged under 18 who are securely remanded. Our major reform is our proposals on remand. These focus the use of remand in custody on those who are likely to receive a custodial sentence if convicted, with an exception in domestic violence cases. While I recognise that this change will be unwelcome to some, continuing to remand into custody people who in reality have no prospect of being sent to prison if convicted is simply a wasteful use of expensive prison places. On the other hand, if you have committed a serious crime, you can expect a serious punishment, so Part 3 introduces a number of new criminal offences which ensure that the public have confidence in the system. These include: criminalising squatting in a residential building; minimum sentences for those aged 16 and over who use a knife or offensive weapon to threaten another person and cause an immediate risk of serious physical harm to that other person; and a maximum penalty of five years’ imprisonment for causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

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Legal Comment

38

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

What is going on here? Solicitor Advocate Julian Young laments the lack of financial help for those released from court

Julian Young

S

ome time ago I wrote an article about HM Prison Service and payments to prisoners who are released from a Court rather than from a prison. I had hoped [some hope] that someone in authority might take the trouble to read it. I understand that in times of financial austerity, when public funds have to be carefully watched, the Civil Service wishes to save every penny it can. However, there are limits to the financial constraints on HM Prison Service which can have unfortunate consequences. More than once I have represented Defendants and Appellants in a Magistrate’s Court, Youth Court, Crown Court or even the Court of Appeal to find that, upon release from the Court there is either a minimal payment or, more often than not, no release payment whatsoever. Quite how someone who has been in

and problems such as being able to access accommodation/the Probation Service/ Housing Department of a local authority etc. This is, in the 21st century, totally unacceptable. Why not give the Court security company a suitable grant to ensure that funds are always available for a released prisoner [against a signature] and this will assist the prisoner? I have been asked by clients recently released for some money to tide them over and I will usually assist if I can. Most have repaid me out of benefits received weeks later, but defence Solicitors are not a substitute for efficient and effective usage of public finances. If the changes in payment of released inmates are not undertaken and a prisoner has little or no funds, the only way for finding food may be by resorting to criminal activity such as theft [shoplifting or pick-pocketing] or even robbery! An unintended consequence? Undoubtedly. Foreseeable? Of course.

© prisonimage.org

custody, has had no income, has probably spent any money available to him or her on ‘essentials’ or has not received any benefits for many months, is expected to survive is something of a mystery to me. The amounts involved are relatively small, about £46.00 upon which a person released is expected to find board and lodging until the creaking and highly bureaucratic

Miscarriages of Justice Appeals/CCRC Parole All Aspects of Prison Law

Benefits system organises payments. So what is a former inmate to do in this situation, especially if he is told to return to the prison to collect the release grant? Bearing in mind the fact that many prisoners are released late in the day and the prison payments offices close relatively early in the afternoon, that means a wasted journey [usually at the expense of the prisoner]

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Let those who deal with such matters give a few moments thought to this article and act - or even consult me so that we can act in a more humane manner towards those who are vulnerable. Julian Young is a Solicitor Advocate at Julian Young & Co. in London

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Legal Comment

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

39

Prisoners who maintain their innocence

Prison law solicitor Emma Davies explains the difficulties for PMIs Board only has the power to make an assessment of risk.

Emma Davies Hine Solicitors

I

t is widely accepted that prisoners who maintain their innocence face huge difficulty when seeking release. They are required to demonstrate to the Parole Board that their risk of harm is sufficiently reduced to warrant release. This area of prison law is keenly debated and is often the source of attention from prison action groups and the media. Perhaps the most famous case is that of Stephen Downing; a prisoner who served 27 years in custody for murder before having the conviction quashed. Upon his release Mr. Downing raised serious concerns that prisoners who maintain their innocence are discriminated against by the Prison Service and the Parole Board.

The Parole Board cannot refuse release on licence simply because a prisoner maintains their innocence, or is unable to participate in offending behaviour programmes which focus on the crime committed. Indeed if the Parole Board does refuse a progressive move or release solely on these grounds then there will be argument that this is fundamentally wrong and such decision should without a doubt be challenged. However the problem for those maintaining their innocence is that the Parole Board often struggle to find evidence of risk reduction in the absence of successful completion of offending behavioural programmes.

Lowering Risk

The Law

The Parole Board’s principal function is to assess the risk to the public that the prisoner might pose if released. In cases where the prisoner admits their guilt and engages with their sentence plan this can be evidenced through the completion of Offending Behaviour work and subsequent post programme reports, together with comments on behaviour in custody. The issue for those who maintain denial that they were responsible for the index offence is that they may be deemed unsuitable for behavioural courses and thus unable to evidence a reduction in their suggested risk factors that the course is set out to target. This is unsurprising as in offence related courses there is often a requirement that a prisoner discuss the circumstances surrounding the commission of their index offence. Naturally, if a prisoner denies having committed the offence how can they then proceed to discuss why or how the offence was committed? The result of this is that often parole dossiers are prepared, and probation officer reports are written, with limited information on which to assess a reduction of risk.

The Parole Board is required to accept that a prisoner is guilty of the offence for which they are convicted. The Parole Board has no authority to overturn a Court’s decision as the prisoner’s guilt has already been determined in a court of law. The Parole

So how can those who maintain their innocence demonstrate a reduction in risk? Firstly it is important to remember that it is not solely offending behaviour programme reports which assist in sug-

In particular Mr. Downing claimed that if he had made a false confession, and engaged in the associated offending behaviour programmes, then he would have been released over a decade earlier. The opinion of Mr. Downing is echoed by many prisoners who have had their convictions overturned. One of the most contentious issues surrounds the subject of the ‘Parole Deal’. This is when prisoners feel pressurised into admitting guilt for an offence and undertaking offence specific behavioural work, even though this may not be necessary. This is because the alternative appears to be remaining in prison without progressing or clutching onto a faint hope that the conviction will be overturned. This dilemma is stressful for many prisoners and for a ‘lifer’ who maintains his innocence the future is bleak.

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gesting the level of current risk. It is possible for reform to be demonstrated by a prisoner by him remaining adjudication free, gaining employment, undertaking educational or vocational courses and participating in voluntary schemes such as the ‘Buddy’ or ‘Listeners’ scheme. Holding the status of an enhanced prisoner is also beneficial, although establishments will argue that being unable to co-operate in the targets set out on a sentence plan can prevent this status on the Incentive Earned Privileges Scheme. The Parole Board’s recently issued policy states that in order for release to be directed a prisoner should spend time in open conditions in order to demonstrate a sufficient period of testing in an environment with a less stringent regime. This does however work on the assumption that it is possible to progress to open conditions without engaging in specific offence related behavioural courses.

Suitable Courses For those who have been convicted of a sexual offence the usual course of action is to be assessed for suitability for the Sexual Offenders Treatment Programme (SOTP) and possibly the Healthy Sexual Functioning programme (HSF). However, guidance from Prison Services states that neither of the courses is suitable for those who maintain their innocence. This creates a particular difficulty for prisoners who maintain their innocence as they will not be able to participate in those programmes and the very detailed Structured Assessment of Risk and Need (SARN) which follows completion of the SOTP, which is generally used by the Parole Board to assess risk will not be available for consideration. Similarly for violent offences a level of admittance is required to be suitable for programmes such as Controlling Anger and Learning to Manage it (CALM) and the Cognitive Self Change Programme (CSCP). However the CSCP is normally for multiple conviction prisoners but admittance to incidents that did not result in a conviction, but did demonstrate the use of instrumental violence, may enable a prisoner

to be admitted onto that course. Cognitive skills programmes are not offence specific and as such it is possible to participate in Enhanced Thinking Skills (ETS) now more commonly known as the Thinking Skills Programme (TSP). This is a broad course that deals with a prisoner’s problem solving, impulse control and ability to put things into perspective. As such it is arguably a very valuable course to complete, if of course a prisoner is assessed as suitable. Alcohol and drug misuse courses are also not offence specific and subject to assessment for need are suitable for all who have had previous drugs/ alcohol problems. These courses can prove particularly valuable if there is suggested to be a causal link between drugs/alcohol and the offence. A prisoner need not always have be an addict to engage in these courses. In summary it is clear that those who maintain their innocence must work harder and be more creative, in demonstrating that they have reduced their risk of harm and risk of reconviction. In such situations undertaking any available and suitable courses will always be important, as will be complying with the prison regime. Any positions of trust which can be achieved and maintained by prisoners will also demonstrate an ability to handle responsibility.

Parole Review A rigid framework of assessment, predicated upon an admission of guilt, clearly excludes those maintaining innocence from presenting their case objectively. It is up to an expert prison lawyer to illustrate to the Parole Board that a prisoner in such a situation can be released safely by the drafting of detailed representations. These are absolutely vital, especially now there is no longer an automatic right to have an oral hearing, to ensure a prisoner’s review is correctly presented to the Parole Board.

Emma Davies is a Prison law solicitor at Hine Solicitors

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Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

I’m a D Cat, get me out of here! Solicitor Lisa Gianquitto, examines MoJ policy for indeterminate sentence prisoners transferring to open prisons then up to this unit to consult with the various establishments and offender managers in order to facilitate the transfers. It is obviously important that transfers are made to appropriate locations and the wishes of victims will be taken into account. Of less importance will be a prisoner’s choice of open prison as PMS foresee this could lead to additional delays.

Lisa Gianquitto Carringtons solicitors

T

he situation has been dire for a long time. At last the Ministry of Justice has finally looked into the problem facing the huge number of indeterminate sentence prisoners waiting transfer to open prisons.

Instructions have also been given in respect of indeterminate sentence prisoners awaiting transfer and also caught up in the parole process. Transfers are to take place unless the prisoner is within an 8 week window of their next parole hearing date. When transfer does take place it is up to the sending prison to compile all parole reports unless there are ‘exceptional reasons’ why it would be better for the receiving prison to compile the reports.

At the moment, once a lifer prisoner has received a recommendation from the Parole Board to move to an open prison their case is then referred back to the Secretary of State department for a final decision to be made. This takes anything from 6-9 weeks. The prisoner then embarks upon a long wait for a place to become available at an open prison before transfer can take place. How long that prisoner will be required to wait is literally ‘how long is a piece of string?’ Open prisons are vital in preparing indeterminate sentence prisoners for release. The Parole Board has issued a policy supporting this view and making it clear that it will only be in ‘unusual circumstances’ that an indeterminate sentence prisoner is released from closed conditions. The policy states:

The point of open conditions is not simply one of rehabilitation or curing possible institutionalism. It offers the only chance to observe a prisoner putting into practice that which he/she has learned in theory. In other words, a prisoner may well make all the right noises on an accredited programme, but the structured and sheltered nature of closed conditions, where all decisions and responsibilities are taken by others, means that prisoners cannot demonstrate that they can fend for themselves in conditions more akin to those they will face on the outside. Open

HMP Latchmere House which closed on 30 September 2011

conditions offers this opportunity as far as possible. It is the only true testing ground. The capacity of the open estate was reduced on 30 September this year with the closure of HMP Latchmere House and the re-housing of the existing Latchmere residents. In addition, the riots at HMP Ford earlier this year had a huge impact on movement within the category D estate. It must be remembered that category D prisons serve both determinate and indeterminate sentence prisoners. The places at these prisons for indeterminate sentence prisoners are limited. For example HMP Standford Hill has 48 places out of approximately 450 allocated for indeterminate sentence prisoners. This is because housing an indeterminate sentence prisoner is more resource intensive and ultimately more costly. There are currently over 600 prisoners waiting for a move to an open prison. The decision has been taken that all transfers will be managed from one location at the

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Population Management Section (PMS) of NOMS and prisons will no longer hold waiting lists. It is anticipated that it will take approximately 9 months to clear the backlog of prisoners waiting to transfer. The new policy states prisoners will be prioritised for transfer based on the following: 1. Prisoners whose tariff has expired will take precedence over pre-tariff prisoners. 2. Post-tariff prisoners will then be prioritised in line with the length of time they have been waiting for transfer to open conditions. The date the Secretary of State approved the move will be the basis upon which waiting time is calculated. 3. Length of tariff will not be used as a criterion for prioritisation in this exercise in the same way as it is for moves within the closed estate. The Public Protection Group (PPG) will be applying the criteria and gathering the necessary information to pass to PMS. It is

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PMS are initially aiming to move approximately 50 prisoners a month based on the above criteria. Any existing agreements to move a prisoner in the future will be cancelled as the above policy takes priority. It is sincerely hoped that the new policy will alleviate the huge backlog that has arisen although it will take several weeks to be fully operational. It may be that not all indeterminate sentence prisoners will welcome this new policy. It is clear that priority has been given to post tariff prisoners, with little consideration given to pre-tariff prisoners who have worked exceptionally hard and received Secretary of State approval to move to an open prison. A prisoner in these circumstances will now be put behind the list of post tariff prisoners awaiting such a move. If you are a pre-tariff prisoner that has been adversely affected by the new policy or simply require further advice or assistance in moving to an open prison please contact Lisa Gianquitto at Carringtons solicitors.

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Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Foreign Intercepts Challenging Admissibility Aziz Rahman, Solicitor and Jonathan Lennon, Barrister

I

t is well known that material gathered from intercepted phone calls cannot be evidence in a criminal trial in this country. It is s17 of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA) that provides that prohibition. In fact s17 provides that it is unlawful even to ask questions in Court about the existence of intercept material – there are certain limited exceptions under s18. The reason is to avoid the general public learning of the authorities’ abilities and, more to the point, what the authorities cannot do. This prohibition must surely end one of these days – many prosecutors feel frustrated that they cannot use such material; equally many defendants feel that the Crown have in their possession material that may assist their defence.

The starting point - RIPA In fact RIPA does not prohibit all intercept material from disclosure and use. In 2006 a Turkish national was convicted as a ringleader in a huge people smuggling operation. The police had intercept material from Belgium and the CPS made it known that the material could only have been admissible because it was obtained by overseas law enforcement agencies. What is the law in this situation?

Interception Warrants It is impossible to explain in a short article the complexities of this area - which many criminal lawyers don’t properly understand. The starting point is that under s1 (1) of RIPA it is an offence to intercept any telecommunications or postal communications in the UK unless it is done with “lawful authority”. “Lawful authority” requires (in most cases) that an interception warrant is issued by the Home Secretary under s5 of the Act. Warrants however are not granted easily; the suspect’s right to privacy under Art 8 has to be considered and the interference must be ‘proportionate’ and ‘necessary’. This is recognition of how serious the breach of privacy is –listening to ‘phone calls is clearly extremely intrusive and should never become a matter of routine. In R v P [2001] 2 WLR 463, the House of Lords considered the predecessor to s17 of RIPA, s9 of the Interception of Communications Act 1985 (IOCA). It found that the 1985 Act applied only to intercepts in the UK. The Court followed the earlier case of R v Aujla, Times Law Reps, 24/11/97. In that case the Dutch authorities intercepted calls between a person in this country and a person in Holland, without the knowledge of the British police. The Court found that the interception of calls by tapping a line in Holland was not a breach of IOCA (all UK ‘phone tapping is illegal unless properly authorised by IOCA, or now RIPA) – the issue for the Court then was should the evidence be admitted, not can the evidence be admitted. The Court held that the trial Judge had to take into account the circumstances in which the material was obtained. That discretion included considerable weight to be attached to the suspect’s right to privacy as guaranteed by Art 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. All these cases of course are pre-RIPA. Today the European Convention has fuller effect since implementation, in October 2000, of the Human Rights Act 1998.

Mutual Assistance The UK, has been since May 2000, a party to the Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters between the Member States of the EU. This requires E.U. States to co-operate with each

other and provide assistance in respect of criminal investigations. Section 1(4) of RIPA applies to ‘international agreements’ – e.g. the EU convention. It provides that where such an agreement is in place the Home Secretary must not issue any request for assistance to another country without “lawful authority”. Lawful authority here means the Home Secretary must issue an interception warrant under s5 (1), prior to any request for mutual assistance. So if you are now awaiting trial in this country and the evidence is based upon material intercepted overseas in an E.U. country (and you were in that country at the time) the first question must be ‘who ordered the interception?’ The British or the other State?

Interceptions Abroad - initiated by the British Authorities Say, for example, that the UK police are investigating a suspect who is a British national but based overseas in an E.U. country. The police want to listen to his phone calls but need the assistance of that country’s authorities. Then, in that case s1(4) applies and the first step is for the police to get the Home Secretary to issue a warrant and then ask the Member State for assistance, as RIPA now specifically recognises the E.U. wide Convention on Mutual Assistance. It should be bourne in mind that RIPA only ‘designated’ that Convention on 1st April 2004 – RIPA (Designation of an International Agreement) Order 2004. It may therefore be arguable that any requests made prior to this date are simply unlawful as the mutual assistance Convention had not yet been recognised and the proper safeguards put in place. Assuming though that RIPA is properly engaged, because the British police had asked the overseas E.U. State for help (after 1st April 2004), and did use the s5 warrant procedure, then s17 is firmly engaged as well – in fact s17(2)(b) specifically relates to international mutual assistance requests. Thus, it would be unlawful for that intercepted material to go before the jury. It would be for intelligence purposes only.

Interceptions Abroad - initiated by an E.U. Authority If, on the other hand, the British police have not instigated the interception then RIPA might not be relevant and s17 would not bite. This though does not mean that the material is automatically admissible as evidence; as some may think. There should at that stage be consideration given to legal argument for the exclusion of that material. This would be an enhanced version of the Aujila arguments mentioned above. For example, just because RIPA does not apply, does not mean the Human Rights Act does not apply – questions would arise such as why was the intercept authorised, is the procedure in the authorising country compliant with the Convention on Human Rights, and so on. However, just because material is gained unlawfully does not mean it is inadmissible. Unlawfully obtained material may be kept from the jury depending on the type of breach of the rules and the unfairness caused – only where s17 is involved is there a definitive stay on the use of intercept material. Furthermore, there are additional arguments about voice attribution; voices are not like fingerprints or DNA – it is an inexact science. In R v O’Doherty [2203] 1 Cr. App. R 5 it was held that, in the present state of scientific knowledge, no prosecution should be brought where the identification evidence relied solely on what is called the ‘auditory method’ (dialect/accent) of voice attribution, there should also be ‘acoustic analysis’, unless the voices concerned all related to a closed group of known individuals; but see now R v Flynn & St. John [2008] 2 Cr. App. R (20) CA and R v Tamiz [2010] EWCA Crim 2638.

RIPA s17 – The Prohibition & Asking Questions Section 17 prevents any questions being asked about the lawfulness of an intercept operation. It is possible however to challenge whether the conditions are in place for a non-RIPA intercept to become evidence i.e. an overseas intercept – is it really non-RIPA, if it, then is the interception lawful in human rights terms; was the foreign interception properly authorised, are their systems human rights compliant etc etc? This was established in Att.-Gen.’s Reference (No. 5 of 2002), 4 ALL ER 901. R v Herbert Austin & Ors [2009] EWCA Crim 1527, 23/7/09 is a case which is of interest. It was an appeal from Winchester Crown Court of defendants charged with drug trafficking offences. The British authorities had been conducting surveillance on a suspect and were aware that he was flying to Columbia. They informed the Columbian authorities who also placed him under surveillance. This surveillance included phone intercepts. That material was provided to the British authorities following a letter of request. The Crown then applied to adduce the material before the jury at the subsequent trial. The defence resisted and relied on expert evidence to suggest that the calls were actually intercepted in this country and not in Columbia (in which case s17 would apply). The Judge heard evidence on this topic and also heard from the Crown in a Public Interest Immunity application – i.e. were the defence are excluded from Court. This procedure formed part of the challenge in the Court of Appeal. The trial Judge found that the recordings were made in Columbia not the UK and ruled the material admissible, The Appeal Court, having considered the PII material, found that it would have made no difference had the defence had sight of that material and therefore it would not have assisted in any s17 arguments. However, the Court found that

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the defence were not in possession of certain facts and materials which may have assisted them in an application to exclude the material – i.e. even though it was admissible, to exclude it anyway on grounds of fairness. This is often the basis for any exclusion applications – first submission: the material cannot be admitted, second; if it can it shouldn’t, applying s78 of the Police & Criminal Evidence Act 1984. That second limb persuaded the appeal Court that had the proper PII and disclosure provisions been applied as set out in R v H & C [2004] 2 AC 134 things may have been different. Therefore the Court decided that the material ought to be evaluated with that question in mind and that evaluation would have to be carried out by a Special Counsel instructed to review the material and decide how much could be disclosed to the defence so that they could ably put forward their exclusion argument. The Future – SOCA & Cross-border Co-operation In this age of global mass-communication, internet crime and the European Arrest Warrant one thing is for sure; we are to see a lot more of the authorities attempting to introduce foreign intercept material before the Courts; whether they are successful or not is another question.

Jonathan Lennon is a Barrister specialising in serious and complex criminal defence cases at 23 Essex Street Chambers in London. Aziz Rahman is a Solicitor- Advocate and Partner at the leading Criminal Defence firm Rahman Ravelli Solicitors, specialising in Human Rights, Financial Crime and Large Scale Conspiracies/ Serious crime. Rahman Ravelli are members of the Specialist Fraud Panel. Both lawyers acted for H in the leading case of R v H & C.

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42

Legal Q&A

If you have a question you would like answered please send to: ‘Legal’, Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB.

KK - HMP Dartmoor Q I am an innocent prisoner

on an IPP sentence. Lawyers know full well that they cannot help an IPP prisoner so why do they try to help when they know we’re never going to get released? Why don’t lawyers give up helping IPP prisoners as there is nothing that can be done for us; we complete courses which still don’t help towards getting us released.

A You seem to be suggesting that you should

Inside Time Legal Forum Answers to readers’ legal queries are given on a strictly without liability basis. If you propose acting upon any of the opinions that appear, you must first take legal advice. Replies for the Legal Forum kindly provided by: Chivers Solicitors; de Maids; Frank Brazell & Partners; Henry Hyams; Hine & Associates; Kristina Harrison Solicitors: Morgans; Noble Solicitors; Parlby’s; Petherbridge Bassara Solicitors; Stephensons Solicitors LLP; Stevens Solicitors; Switalskis Solicitors and WBW Solicitors - see individual advertisements for full details. Send your legal queries (concise and clearly marked ‘legal’) to our editorial assistant Lucy Forde at Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB. For a prompt response, readers are reminded to send their queries on white paper using black ink or typed if possible. Use a first or second class stamp.

never contact a solicitor because we cannot help IPP sentenced prisoners that maintain their innocence. Of course that is your choice. I would say, however, that a range of challenges against the Prison Service and the Parole Board have shown that solicitors can be effective in the progression process and release (the case of Oyston makes that clear; a successful judicial review of a decision made by the Parole Board refusing release to a person who maintained innocence). I can only suggest that you search for a solicitor that you feel comfortable working with and whom you trust. That way you can start to work together in your progression and ultimate release.

...............................................

PE - HMP Lewes Q Can you please point me in the right direction

concerning bringing legal action against the government for denying my human right to vote in the election?

A Voting rights compensation claims have been ruled out here in the UK in a recent ruling. Your only option at this stage is to apply to the ECHR.

...............................................

Name Supplied Q How do I get the PSR used by the Court

changed? I can prove that the Author lied using my medical records and other documents which I have in my possession. The problem is; how do I do it? I have written to the GMC, BPS and the HPC but it seems that nobody can help. I’ve spoken to the OMU in the Prison and brought it up on my sentence planning board

meeting & OASys meeting but still no joy, any suggestions as to where I can try next?

A You need to contact the relevant Probation Service Office & Probation Officer. You should ask them to amend the report and you will need to provide any evidence you have that shows the report is flawed. Thereafter you should pursue the probation service’s complaint system if the issue has not been resolved.

...............................................

Name Supplied Q I am charged with a serious offence and I

am on remand for this charge now. Much of the evidence against me is ‘hearsay’ evidence. These people are just general public, not legal people or officers of the law. How strong is ‘hearsay’ evidence in law and in a criminal trial? Can hearsay evidence be relied upon in court?

A The rules surrounding hearsay evidence are

very complex and I would suggest that you speak to your representing solicitors in conference prior to your trial. Put simply, the term ‘hearsay’ covers any oral or written statements made by a person who is not the witness testifying in court to prove the contents of the statement. Hearsay evidence can be admissible through the statutory provisions contained in the Criminal Justice Act 2003 and through common law. The weight attached to hearsay evidence will be for the judge or jury to decide and it may not necessarily matter whether the statement was made by a police officer or a member of the public. I apologise for being so vague but the topic area is so wide and so complex that it is impossible to offer firm advice without greater knowledge of the facts of the case.

...............................................

MW - HMP Maidstone Q I have a few questions which I hope you can

answer. Firstly, what does ‘Common Law mean? To receive an IPP, do you have to have been previously convicted of a Schedule 15 offence as well as your index offence being Schedule 15? When did the CJA 2003 actually become

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the law? Lastly, I have a previous offence of ‘indecent exposure’ under the Town Police Clauses Act 1847 from March 2003 before it was the CJA 2003 and now it’s classed as a sexual offence. It’s been included in my RM2000 as a sex offence when at the time of conviction it was a public order offence by law. Is this right?

A Criminal Law is developed one of two ways

– either by parliament enacting law through Acts of parliament (legislation) – or through the decisions of the courts and judges. Common Law is law developed by judges through decisions of courts and their decisions bind future courts. Section 224/225 of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 came into force on 4th April 2005 and gave courts the power to impose IPPs where an offender is aged over 18, convicted of a serious specified (as contained in schedule 15) and where the offender, in the courts opinion, poses a significant risk to the harm of the public. There was no requirement for an offender to have a previous schedule 15 offence on record however, where an offender did have such an offence on record the Court was entitled to draw a conclusion (known as a ‘presumption’) that the offender posed a significant unless sufficient evidence was presented to the contrary. The Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 however made significant changes to the IPP sentences; they can now only be imposed where the offender would be required to serve at least 2 years in custody (the equivalent of a 4 year determinate sentence) or where the defendant has a previous conviction for an offence on the new schedule 15(a) (really serious offences). That said there is no longer a presumption that an offender is dangerous just because he/she has a previous conviction. You ask whether a previous conviction for indecent exposure under the Town Police Clauses Act 1847 should be counted as a ‘sexual offence’ for the purpose of RM2000. Prior to the Criminal Justice Act 2003 indecent exposure was often prosecuted under the Town Police Clauses Act 1847 and Vagrancy Act 1824. As the charge requires wilful (i.e. intentional) and indecent exposure, it is deemed a sexual offence for the purpose of risk assessments.

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If you have a question you would like answered please send to: ‘Robert Banks’, Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB.

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Banks on Sentence Answers by Robert Banks, the barrister who writes Banks on Sentence (now with an extra volume for the law on the orders and procedure). The book is the second largest selling practitioner’s criminal textbook and is used by judges for sentencing more than any other. In September 2011, Robert Banks published Banks on Sentence Compact a new compacted version of Banks on Sentence. It has 704 pages, 17 mm thick and is priced at £34 on the web. It is primarily for those working in the Magistrates’ Court and medium and minor offences at the Crown Court. If you have access to a computer follow us on Twitter @BanksonSentence

www.banksr.com Q I was convicted of four counts of manslaughter. The manslaughter was based on diminished responsibility. I was sentenced to life with a 21-year minimum term. The prosecution say my family never accepted the marriage between my sister and someone with a European background. In the small hours, two men went to the sister’s home and poured petrol through the letter box. In the ensuing fire, the husband managed to escape. His efforts to help the others failed. The sister jumped still burning and died some days later in hospital. Her three young children, two twins and a boy also died. The sister had 80% burns. In his victim impact statement, the husband described the trauma on the night and ever since then. Is my sentence manifestly excessive? A The sentences for manslaughter have increased since Parliament increased the minimum terms for murder. Sentences for

diminished responsibility manslaughter have also increased. Judges assess what would have been the penalty for murder before they decide the penalty for manslaughter. I know nothing about your role and this answer assumes that you, on the prosecution version, were not in a subordinate role. I also know nothing about the reason why the jury convicted you of diminished responsibility. I assume the impairment did not prevent you from being a willing participant. If either of these is not true, this reply will need to be adjusted. Your case has a number of very serious aggravating factors. Firstly, there is the extreme pain and trauma of the victims. Secondly, there is the number of victims; four. Thirdly, the killing of three children. Fourthly, the trauma of the husband. Fifthly, killing by fire is always treated exceptionally seriously. A lesser but still serious aggravating factor is the timing of the attack at night when people are likely to be more vulnerable and less

likely to be to able to escape. The judge then considers the appropriate term if the sentence had been for a fixed number of years, which is known as a determinate sentence. The judge then considers the dangerousness provisions and it is not surprising that he considered a life sentence was appropriate. Next he or she considers whether there are any mitigating factors that can reduce the sentence. Then the judge deducts a fraction of the sentence for a guilty plea, which doesn’t arise in your case. Then the judge divides the term by half and deducts from that any period that has been served on remand awaiting trial and sentence. This means that the Judge must have started at a sentence of 42 years or more (that being twice the 21-year figure). However if the Judge thought that this case was close to murder, which would be understandable, I would imagine he or she would consider that the proper sentence would have been around a 35 year minimum term which would have been the equivalent of a 70 year notional determinate term. That would have been significantly higher than your notional determinate term of 42 years. Without more details of your case I can’t say whether your term was manifestly excessive. However it is unlikely to be.

Q I was convicted of attempted murder

and arson with intent to endanger life and sentenced to 17-years IPP. I appealed

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and was turned down. I know that the scrapping of IPP will not affect my sentence, but do you think there’s a possibility that all existing IPP sentences may be readjusted so they become two thirds of their term?

A The fate of all those who have served their IPP term but remain languishing in prison is very important. The new sentencing Bill does not deal with this problem. I am afraid no one knows the answer. However, politicians invariably approach change in sentences on two factors, a) electoral opportunities and b) cutting costs. These two principles are invariably in conflict. Having seen what a mess the politicians have made of IPP and the minimum terms for murder, it is hard to predict what Parliament might do. I would however imagine that no government will legislate to enable people to be released before their minimum term has been served. I would imagine that with a dangerously rising prison population one of the options for releasing IPP prisoners will have to be considered. One newspaper said only 187 have been released. Perhaps the most logical thing to do would be to alter the test for release. My suggestion would be IPP prisoners should be released after their minimum term unless there is clear material that shows they remain a significant danger to the public. Perhaps as it’s so simple and obvious, it will be the least likely to be adopted.

It is usually not possible to determine whether a particular defendant has grounds of appeal without seeing all the paperwork. Analysing all the paperwork is not possible. The column is designed for simple questions and answers.

To join the professional



43

Please start your letter with the question you want answered and send the letter to Inside Time. Mark the letter for Robert Banks. Make sure your question concerns sentence and not conviction or release. Unless you say you don’t want your question and answer published it will be assumed you don’t have an objection to publication. No-one will have their identity revealed. Facts which indicate a prisoner’s identity will not be printed. Letters which a) are without an address b) which cannot be read or c) are sent direct cannot be answered. Letters have to be sent to me by a solicitor. If your solicitor wants to see a previous question and answer, they are posted on the website.

AN INVITATION

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Legal Q&A

Association of Prison Lawyers in England and Wales

The Association of Prison Lawyers (APL) was formed by a group of specialist prison lawyers in 2008 to represent the interests and views of practitioners in prison law.

We are not a prisoners' rights group.

Primarily, its formation was in response to proposals to cut yet further already meagre LSC funding for this complex area of law, even though no increase in the lowest practitioner fee rates in the legal aid scheme has been seen since 1996. The APL is now organised and fighting the proposals to yet further reduce prison law funding. We are also actively working to increase the skills of prison law practitioners through enhanced training. Member participation is actively encouraged through our members' area with a wide interaction and exchange of news and information to further the aims of good practice in prison law. APL has engaged in robust discussions with the Parole Board and Ministry of Justice regularly.

APL is purely and simply a prison law practitioners' group representing the professional interests of those actively engaged in supervised prison law work funded by the LSC as the principal client organisation. [email protected] www.associationofprisonlawyers.co.uk

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44

Health

If you have a question you would like answered please send to: ‘Health’, Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB.

Inside Health ... Providing this valuable service are Dr Jonathon Tomlinson and Dr Shabana Rauf, both GPs practising in East London. Dr Rauf is particularly interested in women’s health.

Q

My medical condition started last year and has deteriorated since then. I have had a full blood count, diabetes, cholesterol; reactive protein tests and all have come perfectly clean. The doctor here doesn’t know what is wrong or who to refer me to. My whole body feels very light like something which gives it that support and tightness is not there anymore, as a result I tend to get cold very fast and I experience agonising pain. I feel I am sensitive to a lot of things now, even noise. Any information you have regarding this please share with me, as I am scared because I do not know if this is life threatening.

A It sounds like the doctors have done many

tests to establish the cause of these worrying symptoms. Reading through your letter I did get a sense that you are quite anxious about your health and I wondered if you suffered from anxiety or depression. Sometimes the symptoms that you mentioned can be a physical manifestation of the feeling of anxiety and depression. It may be worth speaking to the prison doctors about this and seeing if indeed this may be playing a part.

Q For the past three years I’ve been experiencing auditory hallucinations, thought withdrawal and paranoia. I have been on three different anti psychotics and I am now only on an SSRI to stabilise my mood. I have been diagnosed with a schizotypal personality disorder but my first doctor thought I had

schizophrenia. Have I been diagnosed right and if so am I on the right treatment?

A

As you are aware schizophrenia is a mental illness. The symptoms of schizophrenia are complex and to summarise they include hallucinations, delusion i.e. false ideas, disordered thinking as well as problems with feelings and motivation. In many people the symptoms come and go throughout life. Treatments include oral medication which is predominantly antipsychotic medication (although a medication such as an SSRI is given in patients who have signs of depression), talking therapies and support in the community via a key worker or social worker. People with a schizoid personality disorder tend to lead solitary lifestyles, are secretive, have a lack of interest in social relationships. It isn’t the same as schizophrenia although it can share some similar characteristics hence why the diagnosis can be difficult to make. Treatment can include medications such as SSRI and talking therapies. A diagnosis of either schizophrenia or a Schizoid Personality disorder is usually made by a psychiatrist. Although at times the diagnosis can be clear, most times it is made over time so relies on having repeated consultations with your psychiatrist or backed up by information by a doctor that knows you well such as your GP.

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Your symptoms that you have listed are more suggestive of schizophrenia in which case a SSRI alone is not the right treatment. However I suggest speaking to your psychiatrist again and asking about why he had made this new diagnosis.

Q I had a serious car accident which left me with pins/plates in both legs and left forearm and I suffer with trapped nerve in my back due to the accident. I was being prescribed 600mg gabapentin three times a day but due to the inmates abusing this drug, along with others my meds have been reviewed and now I have been placed on gabapentin and diclofenac twice a day and paracetamol. I am now in constant pain as I have been on 600mg gabapentin for almost nine years. For them to suddenly stop is putting me in some serious pain. A I must agree with you. This doesn’t make sense to reduce a medication that is helping. I would approach the prison doctors again. Q For the past couple of years I’ve consistently suffered with B.V or thrush. I had a check-up before coming to prison and I noticed I was slightly bleeding but they had told me not to worry as sometimes they clip the cervix and it should be fine in a week or so. I continued to bleed for the next few weeks although it was old blood however I would bleed fresh blood during intercourse. Again I was told it was nothing and that I was fine. I am currently involved in a same sex relationship and whenever we have had intercourse I always bleed fresh blood and this happens all the time, I still continue to bleed after intercourse as well. This really worries me and I would really appreciate it if you could give me your professional opinion on what you think could be the problem. A Bleeding in between periods or after sex may be for a number of reasons. This can include: • Infections including sexually and non sexually treated infections;

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• Erosion of the cervix - this is a common non cancerous condition that affects the neck of the womb. There are various causes including being on a pill; • Medications such as the pill; • Polyps (non cancerous lesions) of the cervix (also known as the neck of the womb) or polyps within the womb; • Trauma; • Less commonly cancers of the vagina or the cervix. If you have not had a recent vaginal examination or swabs then it may be worth seeing the prison doctor again so that these tests may be carried out. He or she may ask you more questions regarding your previous gynaecological and medical history and carry out an examination. If there is an erosion on the neck of the womb then the doctor will be able to see this during the examination. Also if your smear test was twelve months ago it may be worthwhile repeating this. If the examination and investigations do not show any causes then the doctor may order an ultrasound scan of the womb. Vaginal discharge is a common symptom in women. It can be normal, due to infections (sexually and non-sexually transmitted infections) or due to something more serious like a cancer although this isn’t common. If you are having repeated discharge it may be worth having swabs done again. If these show thrush and you have had this many times it may be worthwhile the prison doctor excluding diabetes. This is done by performing a simple blood test. If you have a question relating to your own health, write a brief letter to Inside Time (Health) Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB. Everyone will receive a reply, however only a selection will be published each month and no names will be disclosed.

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Health

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What are leg cramps?

....................................................................... A leg cramp is a pain that comes from a leg muscle. It is due to a muscle spasm which is when a muscle contracts too hard. It usually occurs in a calf muscle, below and behind a knee. The small muscles of the feet are sometimes affected.

Then, keeping the soles of your feet flat on the floor, bend forward and lean on the wall. You will feel your calf muscles stretch. Do this several times, each time for as long as you can manage. It may take a week or so of exercises before you notice an improvement. So, it is worth giving yourself a 2- to 4-week trial of regular calf stretching exercises to see if your cramps ease off. The cramps may not go completely, but their frequency and/or severity may reduce.

Cramps (in the leg)

A cramp pain typically lasts a few minutes. In some cases it lasts just seconds, but in some cases it lasts up to 10 minutes. The severity of the pain varies. The muscle may remain tender for up to 24 hours after a leg cramp. Leg cramps usually occur when you are resting - most commonly at night when in bed. (They are often called night cramps.) They may wake you. It can become a distressing condition if your sleep is regularly disturbed.

Posture of the legs when resting in bed Positions which prevent the calf muscle from shortening when you are asleep may help. The following are not proven treatments (from research studies), but some experts believe that they help to prevent cramps.

Who gets leg cramps?

....................................................................... Many people have an occasional leg cramp. However, they occur frequently in some people. They are more common in older people. About 1 in 3 people over the age of 60, and about half of people over the age of 80, have regular leg cramps. About 4 in 10 people who have leg cramps have at least three per week. They occur every day in some people.

What causes leg cramps?

....................................................................... Unknown cause (idiopathic leg cramps) In most cases the cause is not known. One theory is that cramps occur when a muscle that is already in a shortened position is stimulated to contract. As the muscle is already shortened, to contract further may cause the muscle to go into spasm. This commonly happens at night in bed, as the natural position we lie in is with the knees slightly bent (flexed), and with feet pointing slightly downwards. In this position the calf muscle is relatively shortened and may be prone to cramps. This theory explains why stretching exercises may cure the problem. Secondary causes In some cases, the cramps may be a symptom of another problem. For example: • Some drugs can cause cramps as a side-effect, or make cramps occur more often. These include: diuretics (water tablets), nifedipine, cimetidine, salbutamol, statins, terbutaline, lithium, clofibrate, penicillamine, phenothiazines, and nicotinic acid. • Over-exertion of muscles. • Dehydration. • Conditions that cause alterations in the balance of salts in the bloodstream (such as a high or low sodium or potassium level). • Some people who have renal (kidney) dialysis get leg cramps. • Pregnancy - usually in the later stages. • An untreated underactive thyroid gland. • Peripheral vascular disease (narrowing of the leg arteries which causes poor circulation). • Excess alcohol. • Some uncommon disorders of nerves. • Rare causes include: cirrhosis of the liver; lead poisoning; sarcoidosis.

45

Leg cramps are common. The cause is not known in most cases. However, some drugs and diseases sometimes cause leg cramps. Regular calf stretching exercises may prevent leg cramps. Quinine tablets may be advised as a last resort if you have cramps regularly.

What is the treatment for a leg cramp?

....................................................................... Stretching and massaging the affected muscle can usually relieve an attack of cramp. Most cramps soon ease off. Painkillers are not usually helpful as they do not act quickly enough. However, a painkiller such as paracetamol may help to ease muscle discomfort and tenderness that sometimes persists for up to 24 hours after a cramp has gone.

What are the options for preventing leg cramps?

....................................................................... If cramps do not occur often, then no particular treatment is usually needed. However, if you have frequent cramps, you may wish to consider ways of preventing them. Consider your medication (where appropriate) or other conditions Tell your doctor if you take any of the drugs listed earlier. It may be causing the leg cramps, or making them recur more often. Alternative drugs may be available. Also, if you have other symptoms apart from cramps, see your doctor who may examine you or do some checks to rule out a secondary cause for the cramps. Stretching exercises Stretching exercises are commonly advised. However, there is a lack of good research evidence to prove that they work. At first, do stretching exercises of affected muscles for about five minutes, three times a day. Do the last exercise shortly before bedtime. If the cramps ease off, you may then only need to do the exercise once or twice a day to keep the cramps away. To stretch calf muscles, stand about 60-90 cm from a wall.

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• Using a pillow to prop the feet up in bed while sleeping on your back. • Hanging the feet over the end of the bed while sleeping on your front. • Keeping blankets loose at the foot of the bed to prevent toes and feet from pointing downwards during sleep. Quinine is used as a last resort - and you need to be aware of the risks If you take quinine you have a good chance of reducing the number and/or severity of leg cramps, but it may not stop them altogether. One tablet at bedtime is the normal dose. Most people can take quinine, but do not take it if you are pregnant or may become pregnant. There are also some rare conditions where you should not take quinine. These include: a previous reaction to quinine; a previous haemolytic anaemia; optic neuritis; glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency. Side-effects are uncommon at the low dose used to treat leg cramps. However, serious side-effects do sometimes occur. For example, a serious blood disorder which is potentially fatal is a known rare side-effect. Also, a small number of people who take quinine long-term develop a condition called cinchonism (a complex of nausea, vomiting, dizziness, visual disturbance, and hearing impairment). Read the drug packet leaflet for a full list of possible side-effects. Note: quinine is dangerous in overdose Other treatments Other drugs have been suggested as possible treatments for leg cramps. These include: magnesium, diltiazem, vitamin B complex, vitamin E, naftidrofuryl, orphenadrine, and verapamil. In general, these are not currently recommended, as most studies involving them found that they do not work very well in most people. Quinine remains the main treatment. However, your doctor may suggest a trial of one of these drugs if quinine has not worked or has caused troublesome side-effects. Information kindly supplied by Patient UK - Comprehensive health information as provided by GPs and nurses to patients during consultations. www.patient.co.uk

Twell & Co Advice and assistance in relation to all aspects of criminal and prison law. Service throughout England & Wales Contact Robert Twell or Shevette Adams - Rose Twell & Co 3rd Floor, 48 Lugley Street Newport Isle of Wight PO30 5HD

01983 539 999

46

Wellbeing

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Leading you to a healthy lifestyle ‘A lifestyle worth living’ A healthy lifestyle is achieved by having a balance of physical fitness, psychological fitness and a balanced nutritional diet. In return, you will look and feel better, have plenty of energy for every moment in life and your body has a better chance of staying fit and keeping diseases at bay. This month we will be looking at a general overview on ways not only to lead you to a healthy lifestyle, but also your family, friends and everyone around you, as it is a lifestyle we all can live. For many, taking the first step on to your healthy lifestyle can be the hardest part, but once you start leading it, it can seem like a drug because it can become obsessive, addictive and something you will depend upon. But I assure you, if you define exercise and leading a healthy lifestyle as a drug, it’s the only drug worth doing in your life! by PE Instructor Matt Vanstone - HMP Erlestoke 2011 English Indoor Rowing champion

My pathway on a Healthy lifestyle Since I have started producing this article, a lot of people have been asking me ‘why do I have such a passion for keeping myself fit and encouraging others to live a healthy life-style?’ For me, Physical education and a healthy lifestyle is a way of life and moments are rare when I actually am not enjoying life. I enjoy pushing my body to the absolute limit, competing at a high level and getting other people involved with my training regime to show them what they can achieve. The times when I take 2 weeks off training for holidays or rest periods, I can easily put on a stone of weight due to not adjusting my diet to meet the drastic change in calorie consumption. However, this is part of my total balanced healthy lifestyle and is a method of determination for me to get back in to my training regime straight away. I have always said there are three types of people in this world, people that will make things happen, people who watch things happen and people that just sit there and watch life go by and wonder what has happened. Being the type of person I am, I want to make things happen, and I want everyone to be able to have the opportunity to live a healthy lifestyle. Remember, a healthy lifestyle shouldn’t be a chore or something that’s hard to do, it needs to be something that you can live with.

Helping you quit smoking The way I would see life If I smoked

Every cigarette I can have will make me temporarily feel better, I can take 14 seconds off my life with every one so I can work for less of my life and sit around not being able to walk to the shops to get my next pack. Instead, I could send my grandchildren (if I am still alive) to the shops to pick up my daily “pack of fags” and pay them a cigarette for their efforts. I can happily sit in front of the TV Monday to Friday watching Jeremy Kyle three times per day with my cigarette, breathing fast and feeling my heart work hard just by sitting down. This is the only workout I could possibly need! I can then watch the football, watch the surfing, watch the rowing and watch the contenders on Gladiators on my 32” Plasma TV with surround sound. I could sit around and watch life go by, watch other people live a healthy lifestyle on TV and in 30 years time wonder, what has happened.

“Does this sound appealing to me? No Thank you”

in winter months this can be extremely cold. Being a non smoker all of my life, I don’t have a solution that I have personally used. However, I have read many studies, heard success stories from close friends on how they quit, and advice I have given to people which I will share with you.

You’re not alone

One cigarette at a time

If you are a heavy smoker, just cut one cigarette out every two days until you are down to five a day. Then reduce it by one a week. The gradual decrease should not shock your body.

Keep yourself occupied

When you find yourself reaching for the cigarette because you have nothing else to do, do something physically active to take your mind off the desire to have a cigarette. Or even better, don’t have any easily accessible to you.

Patches

Inactive Individual Build up to 1 x 30 mins moderate activity per week Build up to 5 x 30 mins moderate activity per week

Healthcare centres can offer you patches if you want them. Some prisons allow you to purchase them.

Add 1 x 20 mins vigorous intensity per week

Climbing the mountain

Add up to 3 x 20 vigorous intensity per week

If you have previously failed, this is just a learning curve. Choose a day to quit, and start from there. The first few days will be as hard as climbing a mountain (if not harder) but once you’ve reached the top, you have done the worst part, you can enjoy the sights of what you have already achieved!

Just give it an hour…

If it is time for your cigarette break, just leave it an hour and see how well you cope. If you feel ok, see if you can go another. This is a good way to test your level of addiction.

Planning your exercise routine in your ‘life’

The reason why inactive individuals could start off slow is so we maintain a constant and progressive improvement of cardiovascular fitness. If an inactive individual was to jump straight in to vigorous exercise, there is a high risk of causing injury and not having a positive training effect leading to a total burnout and ending up worse than when initially starting.

Lifestyle

Types of exercise you might like to consider are running, rowing, cross training, cycling, aerobics and skiing.

Change tobacco brand

If you have a favourite brand, buy another one, see if the taste puts you off wanting a cigarette.

Intensify

The amount of effort in a specific workout.

Frequency

How often you can exercise?

Exercise

›› Just ask yourself how much it costs you? This could be money spent on luxuries such as quality food from the canteen or new clothes. ›› How much time do you spend smoking each day? ›› Multiple the above figure by 365, every year you spend that amount of time smoking! ›› Most places have smoking bans, so you have to go outside or to designated areas, and

Hopefully by now, if you do not exercise regularly, you are already looking for a new pair of trainers and a tracksuit. This first approach is for your benefit, and it’s simple to follow. I like to call it the progressive approach to cardiovascular fitness.

The key thing to remember is that you’re not by yourself. Millions of people want to quit, and you can all get together and help each other at stop smoking groups. By having the support of others, and also offering support back, you can work as a team, and as a team, you all achieve a goal together.

How long will you be able to exercise for?

More reasons to quit

Getting you involved with exercise

What exercise are you doing? ›› Exercise should be fun and make you feel good about yourself. ›› Get competitive, play sports or enter competitions. ›› Have a training partner so you are not only letting yourself down if you miss a session. ›› Have a goal or ambition. ›› Join a class (body pump, aerobics, step. Pilaics etc).

David Scourfield Solicitors Protecting your Rights! Prison Law Specialists from Adjudications to Parole Nationwide Appeals Contact a member of our Team David Scourfield Solicitors at 28 Baker Street Middlesborough TS1 2LH 01642 874 999 or 56 Avenue Road Hartlepool TS24 8AT 01429 869 523

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A treat for your feet

• Sit on your bed or on the floor with both legs stretched out. Then bend up your left knee and position your left foot so that you can massage the sole with both thumbs. Don’t be afraid to push firmly. Press in, rub and circle with the thumbs all over the foot. Be sure to do the heel, the arches and the pads just below where the toes join the foot. You can use your opposite elbow as a massage tool instead of the thumbs, but don’t worry if you can’t reach. Be aware of your breathing as you do this, and of how your foot feels. Do this for about one minute.

Rod Harper works as a consultant, writer, and teacher of astrology.

Your hard work should pay dividends this month with a possible helping hand from a female authority figure - or is it just Lady Luck? - in the early part of the month. Unexpected news around the 10th could throw a spanner in the works, but keep your head down and don’t do anything rash. The second half of December should see you in a calmer frame of mind. Taurus the Bull 21st April to 20th May • Now, interlace the toes of the left foot with the fingers of the right, forming as tight as a connection as possible. Bend the toes towards the top of the foot and count 5 slow easy breaths. Don’t neglect the smallest toe, even if you have to use your other hand to help it! With the fingers and toes still interlaced, bend the toes the other way, so the tops of the toes are being stretched. Do this for 5 natural breaths.

As one door closes, another one falls off its hinges could have been the motto for Taurus for much of this year. However things look set to turn for the better when your ruler Jupiter goes direct on Christmas Day. The lunar eclipse of the 10th could draw a line under a situation that has been costing you dear. It’s time to direct your energies towards a new direction. Gemini the Twins 21st May to 21st June

You normally like to think you have your finger on the pulse, but crossed wires and mixed messages have been throwing you off the scent just lately. A powerful lunar eclipse across your relationships axis on the 10th brings personal matters to the fore, and towards the end of the month there may be some old debts to be paid off and unfinished business to attend to... Cancer the Crab 22nd June to 23rd July

• Release the fingers from the toes and take hold of the big toe. Rotate it 10 times slowly in one direction, and 10 times in the other. Move down to the next toe and the same thing. Keep going with all five toes, one at a time. • Finally, place the sole of the left foot on the floor and vigorously rub the whole foot: top, sides, ankles, toes, bottom. Do this for about 30 seconds. Before you do the other foot, stretch both your feet out and look at them. Do they look any different? Feel any different? Now do the same thing on the other side.

• Next, sit with the left ankle resting on the opposite knee. Place the left hand underneath the ankle, and with the right hand, rotate the left ankle slowly around while you count 10 easy, natural breaths. Then rotate the ankle the other way for 10 breaths. Let the hand do all the work and the ankle be slack and relaxed.

Rod Harper

Aries The Ram 21st March to 20th April

Your toes and feet have done a HUGE amount of work for you in your life, getting you from place to place, often being called on to stand or walk or run for hours at a time. Our feet are the base on which the rest of our body stands. You can give them special treatment from time to time without having a pedicure or a visit from the chiropodist – nice as those might be! Your feet will feel and look happier and healthier, and it has a positive affect on the rest of your body systems, as anyone who knows about acupuncture will tell you. Get your feet nice and clean before you do this, and make sure they’re dry as well. Here’s what you do:

Steering by the stars

This is fantastic to do if you’ve been on your feet all day. It is also good to do sometimes as part of your yoga warm up. You may notice a significant difference if you are doing lots of standing yoga postures. Finally, this is excellent for improving circulation in your feet, if you suffer from neuropathy or poor circulation. There is so much that we can do for ourselves, to take control and feel better without fancy equipment, money or much time. Treat yourself!

If you want a free book and CD to help you set up a regular yoga and meditation practice write to The Prison Phoenix Trust, PO Box 328, Oxford OX2 7HF. The Prison Phoenix Trust supports prisoners and prison officers in their spiritual lives through meditation, yoga, silence and the breath. The Trust works with people of any faith or none.

Unsettling news around the time of the eclipsed Full Moon on the 10th could leave you feeling rattled, but don’t let it get out of proportion. A powerful New Moon close to power-planet Pluto in your relationships zone linked to lucky Jupiter on Christmas Eve could spell a new start – or a new love. You look set to start 2012 on a high note. Leo the Lion 24th July to 23rd August

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Virgo the Virgin 24th August to 23rd September

The normally self-effacing and mild-mannered Virgo is a force to be reckoned with this month. A powerful lunar eclipse on the 10th could see a major turning point. Take care not to burn too many bridges, though. Your ruler Mercury changes direction mid-month and any impulsive action taken now could backfire if you’re not careful. Libra the Scales 24th September to 23rd October

Relationships may have been on a shaky footing over the last few months, but your ruler Venus moving into clear-headed Aquarius midway through the month should see you getting a more levelheaded perspective on things. Scorpio the Scorpion 24th October to 22nd November

You’re used to rolling with life’s punches, so upheavals that might be in store around the time of the eclipsed Full Moon hopefully won’t throw you too much. Don’t allow someone you thought of as a friend undermine your confidence now. A promising aspect between your ruler Mars and lucky Venus on the 4th could promise a stroke of luck that could give you a much-needed boost. Sagittarius the Archer 23rd November to 21st December

A total lunar eclipse across your relationship zone on the 10th could turn the tables on a certain situation, but as your ruler Jupiter changes direction later on in the month, by Christmas you’ll have all the cards in your hands. December is your month, Sagittarius – from now on, it’s onwards and upwards. Capricorn the Goat 22nd December to 20th January

Worries about health issues may be playing on your mind more than usual this month, Capricorn, but news received around the time of the Full Moon on the 10th may cast things in an altogether more promising light. There could also be some pleasant news from someone from afar for those romantically inclined. Aquarius the Water Carrier 21st January to 19th February

Your ruler, Saturn, making a harmonious aspect with Neptune in your sign heralds a rare moment of peace on earth and goodwill to all men, and with Venus moving into your sign on the 19th, things can only get better. A lunar eclipse in your sister sign of Gemini could signify a flash of creative inspiration. Pisces the Fish 20th February to 20th March

This is a great month for experimenting with your creativity, but with tricksy Mercury backtracking across your ruler the Sun on the 4th, be careful it’s not the truth you’re being creative with. Someone you thought of as a friend may spring a surprise around the time of the lunar eclipse on the 10th but don’t worry, Leo – you still have the upper hand.

You may feel as though you’ve been wading through treacle for much of this year, but as your ruler Jupiter turns around on Christmas Day just after a hopeful New Moon, things should start looking altogether more promising for the fish. There’s more to look forward to in 2012 if you can just work out how to find it.

Lorna Elliott

LLB (Hons) is pleased to announce that she has joined Lound Mulrenan Jefferies Solicitors as a consultant.

Please direct all future enquiries to: Lound Mulrenan Jefferies Solicitors 210 Bon Marche Centre, 241-251 Ferndale Road, Brixton, London SW9 8BJ

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48

Book Reviews

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Reading group round-up Image courtesy of Matthew Meadows

Damon Galgut’s In a Strange Room, shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2010, was HMP Bullingdon’s reading group choice last month. Though things never got out of control, the book caused a lot of controversy and passionate debate. It’s a book in which a character who shares his author’s name takes three journeys. The detail and atmosphere are brought out in such depth, each new place comes to life. You can feel the heat and take in the smells. But the characters remain detached, we learn little about them. In ‘The Follower’ Damon’s German companion Reiner is in control: of the route they take; the food they eat; the pace of their journey, always pushing on, wanting to get further than the day before. Damon is the follower, struggling to keep up. So too does the reader, never getting to know the characters who remain stark, desolate and closed off. In ‘The Lover’ Damon has lost the ability to love. Without love and alone, he has nothing. He latches on to Jerome, Alice and Christian, fellow travellers. He seems to fall in love with Jerome, but the few times they are together they remain distant and awkward with each other. Lastly, in ‘The Guardian’ Damon travels with the fragile Anna. It is a battle to keep Anna alive after she has tried to kill herself. Damon spends days at her bedside, alternating between love, hate, sadness and pain. Anna needs love but Damon is not capable of providing it. More of us enjoyed the book than did not. Our reading group comments were very diverse: l Damon remains cut off from other people, from himself, and from the reader. Switching between ‘I’ and ‘he’ when he talks about himself seems part of this. l It’s as if he cannot fully inhabit himself. This is a great book, strong in detail, gradually building up the pace. l Brilliantly written, a great storyteller, I loved this book. l Disappointing, not what I was expecting. I

News and views from prison reading groups across the country. Simon reports from HMP Bullingdon wanted a good travel book; this was not. l Problems with his relationships, big problems. Banal, psychotic - not a book for prison reading, too depressing. l A great book, the story grew stronger and the characters had more depth as the book progressed, great atmosphere. l This book is written in a very interesting style. Three very different stories exploring Damon’s rootlessness and sexuality. The writer is obviously a schizophrenic (an illness I have first-hand experience of). For readers reluctant to put labels on people, call him a confused personality trying to find himself -like lots of other people. His issues are all to do with discovery, searching for love. l I felt frustrated, isolated, shut out. Damon was deeply disturbing, a lost soul. He moved on as soon as he got close to anybody. Perhaps the three main characters he meets – Reiner, Jerome and Anna – are all versions of himself. l The book really started on p.46: ‘In a strange room you must empty yourself for sleep. And before you are emptied for sleep, what are you. And when you are emptied for sleep, you are not. And when you are filled with sleep, you never were. The words came to him from a long way off.’ l A strong sense of detachment with great relevance to all of us. Trying to find oneself through a journey of self-exploration. The journey can be hard and lonely. l Not the sort of book I normally read but very enlightening, well worth reading!

The Bullingdon group is part of the Prison Reading Groups project (PRG), supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. We are also grateful for generous support from Random House publishers. If your prison doesn’t have a reading group encourage your librarian to have a look at the PRG website www.roehampton.ac.uk/prg PRG has worked with National Prison Radio to start a radio book club. If you have access to NPR, listen out for details and ways to take part.

Banks on Sentence: Compact by Robert Banks Book review by Billy Little - HMP Bullingdon I’m sure that there are a million and one methods to critically review a book of this type. The fact of the matter is that Banks has laid out that all important information in a format that is simple to follow. It is, for all intent and purpose, one of those books that comes under the ‘Does what is says…’ banner. Many of the people who use this will already be employed within the judicial system, be familiar with some of the more complex and archaic (Latin) points of reference and will have a working knowledge of its everyday functional use. However, this does not detract from the manner in which the average prisoner would wish to use it and the accurate information it contains. In order to test just how accurate and effective this book was and could be, I conducted a little snapshot survey of a dozen or so cons. I asked each what their index offence was, taking into account any mitigating factors, a plea of guilty/not guilty, what their solicitor/ barrister had told them to expect and what the magistrate/judge has given as a sentence. Now bearing in mind that all the normal scientific methodological practicability has been unceremoniously dumped and replaced by good old fashioned empirical here and now evidence; suffice to say I was really surprised to find that five got lesser sentences than that they were told to expect for a guilty plea and three were given more after being found guilty on a not guilty plea. More importantly, almost to a man, each of them received a sentence that was fairly relative to the one that they had been told to expect. So in this sense, at least, prisoners can be assured that the Sentencing Council’s framework for determining sentences is being adhered to. Robert Banks is careful to make his position clean on the ‘lip service’ that judges pay to the sentencing guidelines. He also notes within the ‘Preface’ that, after the recent trouble on city centre streets around the country, there are clear and existing problems within the judicial system over ensuring that the correct sentence is given for the offence. As opposed

Anthony Stokoe Joel Binns Independent Legal Representation • Lifer Specialist ٠ IPP٠DLP٠ALP٠MLP • Parole/Recall/Adjudication • General Advice and Representation • Judicial Review • Inquests/Death in Custody

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to the good ol’ fashioned let the tabloids and politicians decide method of doing things, well at least I think that’s what I think he was inferring! Should you be a prisoner who is considering an appeal against your sentence, concerned that the sentence you should expect is ‘X’ (way too high) or ‘Y’ (too good to be true), then this is the book you should be using as your point of reference. Robert Banks and his regular and incontrovertible feature ‘Banks on Sentence’ has become an important aspect on the institution that is Inside Time. His ability to assist prisoners with clear and concise, up to date, information on any number of legal issues transfers onto the pages of this book. The A to Z of the criminal act at the front of the book provides the user with an easy to use reference book. With a whole range of contemporary statistics on multiple subject areas, index and core details from other cases that set precedents and outlines of how sentences are graded in terms of severity, Banks has provided prisoners with a valuable tool.

• 109 chapters dealing with offences, 87 chapters dealing with the sentencing orders and other miscellaneous chapters • The endorsement codes and prison in default periods • Summaries of almost all the sentencing guidelines • The mode of trial, maximum sentence and ancillary orders for virtually all prosecuted offences • Well over 100 cases which have been reported since the main work was published • Almost all the statistics in the main work • Over 1,700 index entries • Full guide to totting up • 704 pages ISBN 978-0-9550386-7-9 Published by: Banks on Sentence RRP £36 www.banksr.co.uk

GRAINGER APPLEYARD SOLICITORS

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Contact Jason Newall at: Grainger Appleyard Solicitors 26-27 Hallgate, Doncaster South Yorkshire, DN1 3NL

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Book Review and Art

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

49

The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemmingway

Book review by Simon Vousden - HMP Bullingdon

His passion for deep-sea fishing is reflected in this wonderfully written novel The Old Man and the Sea won Hemmingway a Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954. His passion for deep-sea fishing is reflected in this wonderfully written novel. It’s a story of an old man who has spent a lifetime at sea, a boy taught to fish by the old man and a giant Marlin living far out in the depths of the ocean. Santiago, the old man, was thin and withered, his skin damaged by the sun, his hands scarred from handling fishing lines. He looked old and tired but his eyes still danced with life. Mandolin, the young boy, had fished with the old man since he was five. The boy had learnt so much from the old man about fishing and about life and still believed in him. The old man had not caught a fish for eighty-four days, that’s a long time to go without a fish when you are a fisherman. The boy had fished with the old man for the first forty days. But, after forty days without catching a fish his parents had insisted he change and fish with a lucky boat, he had caught fish with a lucky boat. Eighty-five would be a lucky number, the old man said. The old man was poor and he lived alone. He loved the boy like a son. The boy still helped the old man with his boat, lines and sails. He bought beer for the old man and made sure he ate and had coffee in the mornings. He felt sad for the old man. He would get him more clothes for winter and another blanket to keep him warm. He loved

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the old man. In the evenings they talked of baseball. The Yankees, with the great DiMaggio. The Tigers of Detroit and The Indians of Cleveland, The Reds of Cincinnati and The White Sox of Chicago. They loved baseball. DiMaggio’s father, like the old man, had been a fisherman. The old man needed a big fish. He was going very far out, where the big fish were. He knew the sea so well. He treasured the clean, early morning smell of the ocean. He loved the flying fish, the sound it made with its wings. He hated the Portuguese Man-of-War, he called her a whore, her poison was dangerous and stuck fast, many times it had poisoned his hands from the lines. He spoke of the sea as ‘her’, a woman, feminine. She gave or held great favours and when she was wild or wicked she could not help it. Like a woman she was affected by the moon. He loved the colours of the sea, the way she changed with the light. Above he saw a bird circling. He knew it would lead to fish. He followed keeping his lines upright. He always kept his lines upright, he fished properly. He talked out loud to himself. His line moved, he held it softly. Then it moved again, nothing. Then it came again. He knew it was a Marlin, eating his sardines from the hook. Eat them, come on my fish, eat well. He waited, nothing. Then a heavy pull, nothing. He waited, another pull, it was hard and heavy and the line slipped with the weight of the fish… This is a story about great friendship, loyalty and love. For the old man it’s a battle of wits against the Giant Marlin, against nature, a battle he wins but ultimately loses. This is a great book, a masterpiece, and I would thoroughly recommend it.

The Old Man and the Sea £5.99

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I Hope I Get Some News Soon, Anon, HMP Shotts

The Koestler Exhibition: Scotland 2011 Over 100 pieces of award-winning art created by prisoners and secure patients across Scotland went on display last month at Tramway in Glasgow - Scotland’s most internationally acclaimed venue - at the Koestler Trust’s Art by Prisoners and Secure Patients Exhibition. The collection of painting, drawing, sculpture and creative writing was selected from entries to the 2011 Koestler Awards – which received a record number of over 7,000 entries this year from prisons and secure units across the UK.

Ozymandias, Anon, HMP Glenochil and curate the exhibition, offering a unique perspective from the prisoners themselves. One of the curators from Cornton Vale, Lindsay, said: “I have enjoyed getting to see other people’s artwork. If you really understand a piece of art it tells a story.” Another curator, Kyra, added: “I learnt to see art in different ways and I enjoyed seeing artwork from different people in different circumstances.”

Beached, Anon, HMP Aberdeen

The Exhibition has been curated for the first time by serving prisoners - young women from HM Prison & Young Offender Institution Cornton Vale. The women undertook an intensive training programme to give them the skills to select the exhibits

Tim Robertson, Chief Executive of the Koestler Trust, said: “We’re proud that both the Koestler Awards and the Scottish exhibition are growing in popularity - not only because it plays a major part in reducing reoffending and prisoners rehabilitation – but also because this is really great art that deserves to have an audience.”

50 H

Inside Poetry

If you would like to contribute to the Poetry section, please send your poems to ‘Poetry’, Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB.

H H Poem of theH HStar H H month

Congratulations to Maria Oliver - HMP Drake Hall , who wins our £25 prize for ‘Star Poem of the Month’.

Maria Oliver - HMP Drake Hall What is love? .... Hmmmm Love is a word that comes and goes But few people really know What it means to really love somebody Love does not mean That you use me When you desire sex Oh no... that’s not love... but lust Love does not mean That you smack me Then force me to do things your way Oh no... that’s not love... but violence Love does not mean The passion, thrill or abandonment we feel When we take crack cocaine Or are on a high with heroin Love is not LSD, XTC or taking a trip together Oh no... that’s not love... but drug abuse Love does not mean Buying me expensive clothes Handbags, jeans or shoes Or even my favourite perfume That’s not love... those are nothing but material things Love is.... Totally self-less Caring Kind Sharing Being a part of your heart Love is when... You can’t wait to see me... even though we’ve just parted When you can’t wait to call me... even though we have just ended the call When we sit and talk for hours... or sit together back to back saying nothing Love is when you speak right to my heart without saying a word Love is when you light up the darkness in my life Love is forever... love is like a ring, it is perfectly round having no beginning or end

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

T C Arrival

Ponces

I’ve got shackles on my feet and my hands are tied They are restrictions on my life I cannot hide Restricted on emotions I would like to show How people will react, I just don’t know So I stayed in my cell for the first few days Watching and learning the ropes and the ways Inhaling the atmosphere, antlers out Trying to understand what the unit is about I can’t believe my luck at the chance I’ve been given Everyone seems focused, motivated and driven To better themselves just like me Whether they’re long term, short term or I.P.P It was a shock to the system when I first landed Afraid of being judged, singled out or branded But I soon realised, I’m no different from those They want to make changes as I have chose Individual reasons are what set us apart It may be for confidence or a change of heart And there’s one thing I’ve noticed It’s that we all stand to gain From sharing our experiences, heartache and pain

I dread the door opening Same old faces coming again ‘Got any sugar?’ ‘Got any burn?’ Then out the door, away they turn Then I wait for the second wave The ones back from work, always the same ‘Got any burn?’ ‘Got any sugar?’ ‘Come on pal, come on my brother’ ‘I’ll sort you out come canteen day’ I know it’s just words, just what they say Half way through the week, no tobacco left But still they come to clear out the rest

Craig Birch - HMP Garth

A Poem For The Innocents Dean Dobson - HMP Acklington

Anon - HMP Elmley

‘Got any whiteners?’ ‘Got any gel?’ ‘Can you write me a poem to send to me girl?’ Jesus Christ! I need to say no If I wasn’t so soft, I’d say where to go I’m getting so tired of this one way street I buy this shit for my own little treats I’m gonna toughen up and take a stand Stop getting boyed off. Be more of a man So the next one to come walking through my door Is gonna get cracked straight in the jaw Hopefully I’ll get sent down the block Then my canteen will be mine, and you all can SOD OFF!

Suffer all fools who come unto me Because the good will suffer and the guilty go free The fools become wise and the wise man doesn’t know Then angels die and never grow old I see the guilty laugh and the innocents cry And, of course, I ask the same old question, ‘why?’ You took my life when I was free Tell me now, do you ever stop and think of me? I know who you are and your secret isn’t safe One day, my brother, you’ll make a mistake Then the truth to all will be known As day follows night, your true colours will be shown Don’t get me wrong; I wish you no harm Just justice and truth, then peace and calm So, lay on your bed and try to sleep You know as well as I, your secret won’t keep We will award a prize of £25 to the entry selected as our ‘Star Poem of the Month’. To qualify for a prize, poems should not have won a prize in any other competition or been published previously. Send entries to: Inside Time, Poetry, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire, SO30 2GB. Please put your name, number and prison on the same sheet of paper as your poem. If you win we can’t send your money if we don’t know who or where you are! By submitting your poems to Inside Time you are agreeing that they can be published in any of our ‘not for profit links’, these include the newspaper, website and any forthcoming books. You are also giving permission for Inside Time to use their discretion in allowing other organisations to reproduce this work if considered appropriate, unless you have clearly stated that you do not want this to happen. Any work reproduced in other publications will be on a ‘not for profit’ basis. WHEN SUBMITTING YOUR WORK PLEASE INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING PERMISSION: THIS IS MY OWN WORK AND I AGREE TO INSIDE TIME PUBLISHING IT IN ALL ASSOCIATE SITES AND OTHER PUBLICATIONS AS APPROPRIATE.

Above The Law

Tristam Meyrick - HMP Winchester The streets are ablaze with the rage of youth Trying to burn their way to the truth Dropping all words and picking up sticks No time for discussion, time for blood and bricks It started with parents with answers in mind But soon turned into the blind leading the blind A mob so intent and blinded with rage F**k the consequences, death or a cage! The country stopped and looked in disgust Government and police said, “We will be more robust” Disguising the fact that they are to blame Played the biggest part in our four days of shame Cover ups, smooth talk and rhetoric when they can Another person dead at the hands of the law Three this year and counting, how many more? So while we all must abide and conform You’re free to do what you want if you own a uniform!

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

Beautiful Snow View

Christopher Hall - HMP Stafford I look up out my window And all I can see Is snow falling Dancing through the air So elegantly But the bars obstruct The beauty of the white ground I am unable to see What is all around I can only see What is in the air So I look through the bars Just watching Seeing the beauty that is there It’s falling so softly Bouncing with every breeze Dancing to the rhythm Of the wind through the trees The sky is a fluttering white With a hint of subtle blue Then when it turns to night It’s just white speckles that you see Of the snow still dancing Oh, what a beautiful view

I am myself

If you would like to contribute to the Poetry section, please send your poems to ‘Poetry’, Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB.

51

Tranquillised

Pains of Africa

KR - HMP Ryehill

Anthony Palmer - HMP Camphill

I’ve swallowed down my indignation I’ve closed the doors to imagination As I lie on my bed Counting down the hours in my head Waiting for evening’s medication

On a desert plain Where there is no rain The ghosts of hunger linger For eternity they remain

As the prescription kicks in Then slowly, starts to win This war with my psyche’s decay Vanquished is the chill The feeling of ill As the chameleon ‘esque’ tablet hides it away! The main release from these prisons for me, anyway Is the release of anxiety In a little white box Wheeled to me on a nurse’s tray!

The Cold Block Michael Woods - HMP Acklington I sit in a cold prison cell Dying to ring my cell bell Everyone will think I’m a stress head But all I need is a blanket for my bed

Elizabeth Ferris - HMP Low Newton

I got 14 days cc so I’m down the block It’s all my fault though for being a cock

They come and go Like a series of small deaths Lives move and stand still In the iron bubble Shirts are stiff and chains rattle Too hot or too cold Faces with names And bodies with souls Their voices drowned by Paper towers of Numbers, dates, generic terms And false prophecy I dare not notice the weather I am never outside Sometimes only your enemies Come to you with smiles

The radio’s ok it keeps me in tune But every so often I hear the door boom The screws shout exercise, shower, dinner or tea That’s what the day consists of for me I curl up in a ball ‘cause I’m still so cold Yet still always having to do what I’m told Mop out the screw shouts so I get up and about Now the cell feels more damp, cold, wet and slippy Reminds me of a ice rink when I fall cause I’m dippy It feels like life’s definitely hard down here for me But only 13 more days cc and I’ll be free

Back to normal routine it all the same Pretend to my friends it was easy and I’m still game But next time, before I do anything silly I’ll remember That cold prison cell Dying to press that cell bell

So this is how it ends I can’t believe how My bags are packed I’m ready to leave now I can hear you up the stairs Sobbing your eyes, surprise-surprise You’re not believing my reasons You’re leaving You’re gone I’ve been hurting your feelings And leading them on I’ve been seeing this blonde Well that’s what you think When I was out with the lads And had a few drinks I could explain But it wouldn’t make a difference Because soon enough me and you Will be distant Now we’re on level terms And we’re still texting But when you text back You never put the ‘x’ in

‘Same time tomorrow?’

The Dark

Steve Madden - HMP Castle Huntly Lying on my bed In the dark I have no fear For I welcome The dark The black velvet Envelops me Cocoons me Soothes me No ghosts, demons Nor banshees In the still of the night Permeate my darkness I’m not religious I came from the dark And I will leave In the dark

Past and Present

insidepoetry

Each tear that descends weaves its own fable Autumn reminiscences become unstable No sunshine pierces this window Darkness shrouds my cargo Walking on glass Gently sleeping in grass Sensations flow through Friendships will always devalue Prioritize the unpleasant Forget the fear and infighting And discover what’s fresh and exciting

Available in mid December and in your library shortly after

Stephen Marsh - HMP Swaleside

W

I’m now thawed out and warmed through My lips certainly ain’t blue

Dean Murphy - HMP Aylesbury

I take the cup as it’s proffered My pill and water included Then after a while I’m swimming in denial And yet another long night is concluded!

E

Day 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7 still the same 6, 5, 4 hurt even more 3, 2, 1 still no gain Guess I’ll never get that extra blanket

Break Ups & Make Ups

N

Shifting curtains In a shoebox of bars The light is slowly stripped From a mother’s eyes Her skin is far too pale She is categorized This is the only place Where a clock can’t Tell you the time This time is all feeling Stopping and going Depending on nothing So I join another line And wait and wait and wait Until the doors shut And the pain goes And I am myself

Inside Poetry

Copies are available at a special discount price of £7.50 for Inside Time readers, family and friends. Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB Tel: 0844 335 6483

52

Jailbreak

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

General Knowledge Crossword

TWENTY QUESTIONS TO TEST YOUR GENERAL KNOWLEDGE

Across 1 A situation in which no progress can be made or no advancement is possible (8) 5 The series of examinations at the end of a degree course (6) 9 A musical composition intended as an introduction to an extended work (8) 10 A stableman at an inn (6) 12 Spirit serving Prospero in “The Tempest” (5) 13 Musical film starring Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra (2,3,4) 14 Code of silence in Sicily (6) 15 A large bass instrument of the violin family (5) 18 Constellation containing the bright stars Betelgeuse and Rigel (5) 19 Beatrix ____, writer and illustrator of children’s books (6) 22 Oil-rich country in South America (9) 24 A playing card also called a jack (5) 25 A very wealthy or powerful businessman (6) 26 Musical featuring the song’T Can’t Say No”(8) 27 ____ Waugh, author of “Brideshead Revisited” (6)

1. The 2004 Morgan Spurlock film about the fast food industry is entitled Super Size… what?

11. In 1956, in which Central European country was an uprising quashed by the Soviet Union?

2. What is the name of the hunchback in Victor Hugo’s novel The Hunchback of Notre Dame?

12. Chianti is a type of wine produced in which country?

3. Which Australian supermodel appeared with Hugh Grant in the 1994 film Sirens?

13. Which actor played Captain James T. Kirk in the TV series Star Trek?

4. Tartare sauce is the traditional accompaniment to eat with what food?

14. Kim Clijsters and Justine Henin-Hardenne are Belgian competitors in which sport?

5. In France, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier lies under which Parisian monument?

15. Frankie Dettori is a famous name in which sport?

6. The ‘horn of plenty’ is a type of which edible fungus?

16. The stage musical Taboo is based on the life of which 1980s British pop sensation?

7. Which King of England was the father of King Charles 1?

17. In which country is the medal known as the Iron Cross awarded?

8. As well as the first successful powered aircraft, the Wright brothers managed a factory making which transport devices?

18. In 2001 who became Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport?

9. A popular bar snack, what is the common name for the groundnut?

19. Which country in the Middle East has ‘the Hashemite Kingdom’ as part of its official name?

10. In TV’s the Simpsons, which character owns the Springfield nuclear power station where Homer works?

20. According to the 2006 Michelin Guide, which Berkshire village had two of the top three restaurants in the UK?

28 An IT system of communication for local area networks by coaxial cable (8)

It’s a con

Down 1 Composer of the “New World Symphony” (6) 2 ____ Earhart, famous American aviator (6) 3 A novel by Louisa May Alcott, published in 1871 (6,3) 4 One who makes maps (12) 6 Offspring (5) 7 Oxford college founded in 1437 (3,5) 8 Susan ____, American film actress (8) 11 A garment used to restrain a violent patient or prisoner (12) 15 Victory in a game of chess (9) 16 A small naval escort vessel (8) 17 A built-in housing for a ship’s compass (8) 20 Brownish crimson (6) 21 Former name for the countries of the eastern Mediterranean (6) 23 The chief monetary unit of Poland (5)

Paul McAndrew - HMP Everthorpe

BooksMetals of the Bible   B   H   F   A   F   G   M   U   I   N   I   M   U   L   A   T   G   A   R   E   E   T   J   E   E   K   Q   M   U   D   H   T   O   R   T   F   A   D   N   R   E   S   N   I   K   C   J   L   Q   B   E   A   H   Q   S   D   Y   D   S   S   I   A   S   B   A   E   H   W   J   M   N   J   S   C   L   I   I   N   I   R   O   P   D   A   I   A   A   F   O   G   N   R   P   L   Y   U   H   G   T   Z   B   D   W   C   Z   O   I   R   W   H   V   A   D   M   M   E   I   Q   O   P   I   H   V   O   N   U   T   E   M   G   O   E   N   N   R   W   M   E   A   E   M   P   T   I   R   I   I   L   M   R   I   T   E   T   T   U   N   G   S   T   E   N   T   E   E   K   D   C   Z   I   N   K   Y   E   I   S   T   L     G   S   T   H   I   L   U   H   U   H   R   I   L   G   N   H   E   Z   I   U   I   S   H   O   R   E   M   A   E   N   L   E   R   A   G   O   I   I   H   I   S   G   Y   M   A   E   N   M   S   R   I   M   T   S   N   O   P   D   V   E   I   L   E   R   U   E   A   O   R   O   I   I   G   L   A   A   M   K   C   M   L   N   L   E   D   F   L   G   B   S   T   G   R   N   E   M   O   N   I   T   E   I   K   A   Y   R   E   A   L   U   G   M   N   O   M   T   A   L   O   T   O   F   R   M   X   L   E   T   M   O   R   S   A   R   G   M   U   I   D   A   L   L   A   P   O   O   R   G   N   L   M   M   U   R   D   N   G   Z   C   I   M   N   D   I   D   A   P   I   B   S   T   D   S   I   L   V   D   R   E   P   P       Aluminium    

T   R   E   F   W   A   H   T   L   Y   N   W   R   K   H   B   X   Z   D   O  

H   L   H   Y   W   D   H   C   I   M   C   R   E   L   E   E   T   S   O   C  

Acts Aluminium Colossians Corinthians Argentium Deuteronomy Ephesians Brass Exodus Galatians Chrome Hebrews Isaiah Copper James Gold Jeremiah Job Graphite John Joshua Iron Luke Malachi Lead Mark

Matthew Mercury Nahum

Peter Palladium

Philippians Proverbs Platinum Psalm Revelation Silver Romans Samuel Thessalonians Steel Timothy Titus

Tin

Titanium Tungsten Zinc

Check forward, backward and diagonally, they are all there! Thanks to Angela Jones Thanks to Paul McAndrew - HMP HMP Drake Hall Everthorpe for compiling this wordfor compiling this wordsearch. If you search. If you fancy compiling one for fancy compiling one for us please just us please just send it in max 20 x 20 send it in max 20 x 20 grid & complete grid & complete with answers shown with answers shown on a grid. If we on a grid. If we use it we will send you use it we will send you £5 as a thank £5 as a thank you! you!

ROSS SIMON & Co. Solicitors

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“Quotes”

Quiz

It is really difficult for me to say what is a wealthy person and what is not a wealthy person Multi-billionaire Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich

be anything else unless you want to get completely squashed by the other side



Wandsworth prison is not a holiday camp. I wouldn’t recommend it





Sean Connery is a good actor. It’s a pity I can’t understand what he is saying





Prime Minister David Cameron says PMQs is too macho





Sir Roger Moore on his Bond predecessor

Lord Taylor of Warwick, who was jailed for expenses fraud



I’m enjoying being single – but I do miss sex

It is the most unpleasant looking thing that I have to do every week. It is confrontational, adversarial and quite difficult to



53



The artist Tracey Emin makes an important announcement

Wordsearch

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1. Scotland …. (4) 2. By mouth (4) 3. Takes or seizes (8) 4. Ideal (7) 5. Cogs (5) 6. Italian Man (6) 7. A fight (4 2) 8. Sets of cards (5) 9. Continue (5 2) 10. Treated Maternally (8) 11. Poured off, as wine (8) 12. Stiffened (8) 13. Eye part (4) 14. Spaghetti (5) 15. Slightly sticky (5) 16. Sharp end (5) 17. Palm fruit (4) 18. Hell, informally (5) 19. Lad (5) 20. Hide (5)

Quizwordsearch, submitted by Neil Speed, a former prisoner who also came Sir Roger Moore David Cameron

3 7

9

3 5 9 7

1 4 2 5 5 8

8 6 5 7

4 1 5 9 9 8 1

4 6

3

Daily Sudoku: Tue 15-Nov-2011

PROBLEM? WE 9CAN HANDLE IT! 4 2 5 1 3 6 8 7 5 8 7 9 6 2 4 1 3 3 6 1 7 4 8 2 5 9

(c) Daily Sudoku Ltd 2011. All rights reserved.

1 9 5 8 7 6 3 4 2 We guarantee a prompt response, friendly 4 3 and 8 1thoroughly 2 9 7 6reliable 5 advice representation team. 2 7 6 from 3 5 an4 experienced 1 9 8

8 Hearings, 1 4 2 3 Judicial 5 9 7 Reviews, 6 Parole Recalls,6 Adjudications, 5 3 4 9 7 &8 Categorisation 2 1 reviews 7 2 9 6 8 1 5 3 4 WeDailyare Criminal Sudoku: Tue 15-Nov-2011 and Prison medium Law Specialists The latest video link interview facilities are http://www.dailysudoku.com/ available to speed up the processes and avoid delay in having your concerns addressed. Write to Mark Bailey

Bailey Nicholson Grayson Solicitors 15 Bourne Court Southend Road Ilford Essex IG8 8HD or call

0208 418 2909

For a prompt service throughout the midlands and the south of England

Tracey Emin

Mind gym

8

Lord Taylor of Warwick

(c) Daily Sudoku Ltd 2011. All rights reserved.

SUDOKU & GEFBADCHI

Roman Abramovich

75 16 45

up with…. the(4) concept of GEF BAD CHI whilst in prison. Inside 1. Scotland YardTime features a BAD(4) CHI puzzle on this page. 2. By GEF mouth Oral 3. Takes or seizes (8) Captures GEF BAD CHI By Neil Speed Published by Xlibris. RRP: £12.35 4. Ideal (7) Optimum 5. Cogs (5) Teeth 6. Italian Man (6) by Karl Stokes - HMP Kingston . Start on the leftSignor Submitted with the first number and work your 7. A fight (4 2) way across following the instructions in each cell. See how Dust quicklyup you can do each puzzle and how your 8. Sets of cards (5)times improve month by month! Answers on page 55. If you would like to submit similar puzzles 9. Continue (5 2) we will pay £5 for any that are chosen for print. Please Carrysend on in a minimum of three puzzles together 10. Treated Maternally (8)with the answer! Mothered 11. Poured off, as wine (8) Decanted ×3Stiffened / double it / –150 / 10% of Starched it / +6 = ?? 12. (8) 13. Eye part (4) Iris 14. Spaghetti (5) Pasta times / +34 / ×1½ / +1 / 50% 15. Slightlyitself sticky (5) Tacky of it = ??? 16. Sharp end (5) Point 17. Palm fruit (4) Date double it / +15 / 5% of it = ?? 18. Hell, informally (5) / treble it / -65 / ×4 Hades 19. Lad (5) Youth 20. Hide (5) Cover

Missing word: Packs Q8

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CAPTION COMPETITION

Gema Quiz

Xmas Number Ones 1. Al Martino had the Christmas Number 1 with Here in my heart in which year? 2. The Beatles had the Christmas Number 1 in 1963, 64, 65 and 67 who spoiled the run in 1966? 3. Which is the only other act to have three consecutive Christmas Number 1s? 4. In 2009 the X Factor winner was kept off the Christmas Number 1 spot by which act? 5. The Band Aid hit ‘Do they know it’s Christmas’ was the Christmas Number 1 in which two years? 6. Which novelty act had the Christmas No 1 in 2000 and what was the hit? 7. In 1983 the Flying Pickets held top spot with a cover version of which Yazoo hit? 8. Cliff Richard has had three Christmas No 1s – 1960, 1988 and 1990 what were they?

The new Gema Records catalogue is out now! (Summer 2011) For the first time, we have a DVD section with over 17,000 DVDs. In addition, we have 11,000 New Releases and over 5,000 Special Offers included in the catalogue. PS2 Bundles now come with 2 free pre-owned games. We are now offering used Xbox 360 Arcade consoles with a vastly increased range of games Thousands of price reductions across the board. For your own personal copy, please send a cheque or PO (payable to Gema Records) for £2 to Gema Records, PO Box 54, Reading RG1 3SD and we will immediately despatch a copy to you along with a £2 voucher to use against your first order.

10. Who had the Christmas No 1 in 2010? See black box to the right for details of how to enter. The first three names to be drawn with all correct answers (or nearest) will each receive a £15 Gema Record Voucher & free catalogue

All orders and despatches are confirmed using the emailaprisoner service

Answers to last months quiz: 1. Red Harlow, 2. Timesplitters, 3. Sniper Rifle 4. Ghosts, 5. 1984, 6. United States, 7. Japan, 8. Game Cube, 9. 8MB, 10. Cricket

insideknowledge The prize quiz where we give you the Questions and the Answers!

All the answers are within this issue of Inside Time - all you have to do is find them!!

?

The first three names to be drawn with all-correct answers (or nearest) will receive a £25 cash prize. There will also be two £5 consolation prizes. The winners’ names will appear in next month’s issue. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

What is the total number of 15-18 year olds in prison? What was introduced to ensure humane treatment of all detainees? How much was raised at Shepton Mallet for Breast Cancer? Who would rather collect scrap metal than go to school? What was launched at the Prison Reform Trust’s 30th Anniversary reception? Who was the guest speaker at the recent Longford lecture? Lawyers were overpaid by how much doing legal aid work last year?

Criminal Defence, Appeals and Prison Law Specialists All Prison issues including: • Licence & Parole Hearings • Categorisation & Transfer • Recall to Custody • Ajudications • Tariff & Judicial Review For an Immediate Response contact: Duncan Smith

Glaisyers Solicitors

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0121 233 2971

£25

Another £25 prize is on offer for the best caption to this month’s picture. What do you think is being thought or said here? Freddie Starr takes part in bush tucker trial in I’m a Celebrity

Gema sponsors of Jailbreak David Wolstoncroft HMP Peterhead N Strachan HMP Peterhead Amy Wade HMP Send

HENRY HYAMS

SOLICITORS 7 South Parade, Leeds LS1 5QE 0113 2432288 Categorisation Parole/Recall HDC Progression Adjudications Appeals/CCRC Lifer/IPP issues Judicial Review Contact our Prison Law Team Katy Cowans - Rebecca Seal Rachel Jamieson ›› Registered with EMAP ‹‹

Stephen Marsh HMP Swaleside prize is in the post

GEMA RECORDS - SUPPLIER OF THE UK’S LARGEST BACK CATALOGUE OF MUSIC Telephone: 01189 842 444 Last month’s winners

9. In 2001 which duo’s Christmas No 1 was a remake of Frank and Nancy Sinatra’s hit Somethin’ Stupid

Philip! Hurry up! I’m the one in the hat!

Last month’s winner

>> To enter

Please do not cut out any of these panels. Just send your entry to one or all of these competitions on a separate sheet of paper. Make sure your name, number and prison is on all sheets. Post your entry to:

Inside Time, Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB. You can use one envelope to enter more than one competition just mark it ‘jailbreak’. A 1st or 2nd class stamp is required on your envelope. Closing date for all is 20/12/11

8. At which prison have prisoners been told that they cannot purchase items on their canteen sheet elsewhere? 9. Who started doing milk rounds at the age of eleven? 10. Lucy and Maria were held in the Special Lifers Unit at which jail? 11. Which prison is improving but significant development is still needed? 12. What is the Leopard Studio’s motto? 13. Government Officials have a plan to privatise which service? 14. What percentage of prisoners at HMP Wayland said they were victimised by staff? 15. Which charity works with young people who have drug and alcohol problems?

Answers to Last Month’s Inside Knowledge Prize Quiz 1. Football, 2. 50, 3. 2009, 4. Cigarettes, 5. Learning Matters, 6. Drug problem, 7. Tim Westwood, 8. 14%, 9. Serum, 10. UNLOCK, The National Association of Reformed Offenders, 11. Association time, 12. The Longford Trust, 13. HMP Bronzefield, 14. Asymmetrical features, 15. Professor Vincent Marks Our three £25 Prize winners are: Simon Unsworth HMP Garth, Stephen Reynolds HMP Wormwood Scrubs, Phil Dent HMP Lewes Plus our £5 Consolation prizes go to: Ian Luke Whiteman HMP Leicester, Alex MacInnes HMP Peterhead

“Locked in here all day; you don’t turn criminals into citizens by treating them this way” with kind permission from Billy Bragg

We have a dedicated and specialist team. We offer nothing but honest and professional advice. We aim to deal with your case speedily and efficiently. We aim to provide a quick response to all initial contacts. We regularly attend prisons throughout Northern England but do offer nationwide service in particular: Disability Discrimination Categorisation / Progression Parole & Licence Issues Lifer & IPP cases Adjudications Appeals / CCRC cases Recall HDC Judicial Review www.chiverssolicitors.co.uk

NORTH EAST OFFICE Chivers Solicitors, Abbey Business Centre, Abbey Road, Durham DH1 5JZ

☎ 0191 383 2222

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Chivers Solicitors, Wellington Street, Bingley BD16 2NB

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Comedy Corner

Do you remember? December 1st 1955

Send in your jokes, you will receive £5 for every one we print!

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Star Wars fever hits Britain Thousands of people flock to UK cinemas to watch the long-awaited blockbuster, Star Wars.

Do you have any jokes (printable) that you would like to share with our readers? If so, send them in to: Inside Time (Jokes), Botley Mills, Botley, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GB. If you do not want your name or prison to appear please make it clear. You will receive £5 for every one we print so don’t forget to include your details even if you don’t want them printed.

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Contact a member of our friendly team

December 27th 1977

4 1 5 9 8

Answers below right

Thousands die in Asian tsunami Sea surges triggered by an earthquake under the Indian Ocean kill over 10,000 people in southern Asia, with many more feared dead.

1

10. What was the 1991 hit by TV’s The Simpsons?

December 26th 2004

9

9. Which famous American bomber airplane was the subject of a single by Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, and also covered by several bands since its release in 1980?

Jumbo jet crashes onto Lockerbie A Pan Am jumbo jet with 258 passengers on board crashes on to the town of Lockerbie in Scotland - hundreds are feared dead.

3 7 8 6 5 7

8. The theme song for the James Bond movie A View To A Kill was performed by which band?

December 21st 1988

Daily Sudoku: Tue 15-Nov-2011

7. Which rock band released their fourteenth album, Accelerate, in 2008?

John Lennon shot dead Former Beatle John Lennon is shot dead by an unknown gunman who opened fire outside the musician’s New York apartment.

medium

6. Who had hits in the 1960s with Walk On By and Do You Know The Way To San Jose?

December 8th 1980

Daily Sudoku: Tue 15-Nov-2011

5. Whose first No 1 album was Billion Dollar Babies in 1973?

Birth control pill ‘available to all’ Women who wish to take oral contraception may do so on the National Health Service.

1. 36, 2. 218, 3. 50 1. Yard 2. Oral 3. Captures 5 8 7 9 6 2 4 1 3 4. Optimum 3 6 1 7 4 8 2 5 9 5. Teeth 9 4 2 5 1 3 6 8 7 6. Signor 1 9 5 8 7 6 3 4 2 7. Dust up 4 3 8 1 2 9 7 6 5 2 7 6 3 5 4 1 9 8 8. Missing word: Packs 8 1 4 2 3 5 9 7 6 9. Carry on 6 5 3 4 9 7 8 2 1 10. Mothered 7 2 9 6 8 1 5 3 4 11. Decanted 12. Starched 13. Iris http://www.dailysudoku.com/ 14. Pasta 15. Tacky 16. Point 17. Date 18. Hades 19. Youth 20. Cover

4. No Woman No Cry was one of the biggest successes for which reggae act?

December 4th 1961

Rock & Pop Quiz

1. M.A.S.H. 2. Bat Out of Hell 3. Bobby McFerrin 4. Bob Marley and the Wailers 5. Alice Cooper 6. Dionne Warwick 7. REM 8. Duran Duran 9. Enola Gay 10. Do the Bartman

3. Don’t Worry, Be Happy was a No 1 hit and Grammy Award winner in 1988/89 for which singer?

Down: 1 Dvorak, 2 Amelia, 3 Little Men, 4 Cartographer, 6 Issue, 7 All Souls, 8 Sarandon, 11 Straitjacket, 15 Checkmate, 16 Corvette, 17 Binnacle, 20 Maroon, 21 Levant, 23 Zloty.

2. Which 1977 album by Meatloaf has notched up worldwide sales of over 37 million?

breakfast and proceeds to eat it. The trucker gets up, pays his bill and leaves. The head biker calls the waiter over and says, “That trucker ain’t much of a man letting me take his food like that.” The waiter replies, “He might not be much of a man, he ain’t much of a truck driver either, he just backed over 5 motorcycles!” Peter How - HMP Gartree ............................................................... Ê Q: What did the slug say to the snail? A: ‘Big issue sir?’ Carole Trevethan - HMP Bronzefield

Across: 1 Deadlock, 5 Finals, 9 Overture, 10 Ostler, 12 Ariel, 13 On The Town, 14 Omerta, 15 Cello, 18 Orion, 19 Potter, 22 Venezuela, 24 Knave 25 Tycoon, 26 Oklahoma, 27 Evelyn, 28 Ethernet.

1. To which long-running TV series was Suicide is Painless the catchy theme tune?

Ê Two daughters, a blonde and a brunette inherit their father’s farm. In order to keep it going, they realise they need to buy a bull to breed from, so the brunette heads to the market to buy one. After a long auction, the brunette soon has a fine specimen. She heads to the telegram office to send a message to get her sister to pick her and the bull up in the family truck. “It’s a pound a word, what message do you want to send?” Looking in her purse, the brunette realises she only has one pound left after the auction. “Just send the word ‘comfortable’, She says. Looking confused, the telegraph man says, “How will she know to collect you and the bull just from one word?” The brunette says, “It’s ok, she’s blonde. She’ll read it very slowly.” Danny Charnock - HMP Parkhurst ............................................................... Ê A truck driver goes into a roadside cafe and orders a full English breakfast. Just as it’s brought to his table, a five man biker gang strolls in and walks up to the trucker, takes his

Black woman challenges race law A black woman is arrested by police in Montgomery, Alabama, after refusing to give up her seat on the bus to a white person.

1. Me 2. Quasimodo 3. Elle Macpherson 4. Fish 5. Arc de Triomphe 6. Mushroom 7. James 1 8. Bicycles 9. Peanut 10. Mr Burns 11. Hungary 12. Italy 13. William Shatner 14. Tennis 15. Horseracing 16. Boy George 17. Germany 18. Tessa Jowell 19. Jordan 20. Bray

Rock & Pop Quiz

55

> Next Issue Week commencing 1st January 2012

> looking ahead • January Inside Poetry supplement • February Inside Entertainment • March Inside Poetry supplement

56 National Prison Radio

Insidetime December 2011 www.insidetime.org

December 2011

National Prison Radio is currently available in 65 prisons across England and Wales.

December 2011

What’s on National Prison Radio? What’s on National Prison Day

Mon

Tue

07:00

Porridge

Wed

Thur

Fri

Sat

The first national breakfast show made by and for prisoners big tracks, news, sport, information and real stories of prison life

08:00

The Request Show

Another chance to catch the latest show 09:00 10:00

11:00

Radio? Tue

Wed

Brit 40 The UK’s number one chart show

All Music Daytime

Music and information designed to help you make the most of your time inside

The Selector Two hours of the best in new UK music

hind Bars

Porridge Sat

Sun

The Request Show

Another chance to catch the latest show

14:00

Request Show

requests in to: l Prison Radio, HMP Brixton, London SW2 5XF

15:00

The A List

w s xes

All Music Daytime The Brixton Hour

Music and information designed to help you make the most of your time inside For information, see edition at 07:00

19:05 Oldies Sounds from the 60s, 70s & 80s

Brit 40 See inside for details of special programming over the festive period on National Prison Radio

Running through the latest music to hit the National Prison Radio offices

16:00

ove Songs Hour

19:05 Gospel Hour Uplifting gospel music

20:05 This American Life Stories from the US 21:05 The State We’re In

of classic love songs, the perfect soundtrack for writing those letters home

Bull Music Academy Radio

ings, interviews, mixes and documentary features, exclusive to NPR.

Request Show

The Brixton Hour

om 18:00

Brit 40 The UK’s number one chart show

20:05

A repeat of Friday’s show

Eve

Mon

17:00

Behind Bars

Brixton Hour Show made for Brixton prisoners

Dawn til Dusk Spiritual themes, mellow tunes

All Request Saturday The week’s shows back to back

Behind Bars Repeat from Monday Behind Bars Repeat from Tuesday

Dawn til Dusk Spiritual themes, mellow tunes

Brixton Hour Hear the show again

Behind Bars Repeat from Thursday

All Request Saturday The week’s shows back to back

Behind Bars Repeat from Friday

The Selector Two hours of the best in new UK music

National Prison Radio Book Club An omnibus edition of the week’s book reading

Tue

Wed

Thur

Fri

Your award-winning daily feature show. Entertainment and support,

Reggae and dancehall every Saturday and Gospel for your Sunday morning

helping you to make the most of your time behind bars.

18:00

The Request Show

Requests and shout outs from prisons across England and Wales. Want to hear your favourite song on National Prison Radio? To hear your song, message or poem on the radio, write to us at National Prison Radio, HMP Brixton, London SW2 5XF

19:00

Most Wanted A different theme each week - the definitive tracks

20:00

The Monday Alternative The best in indie music

Behind Bars Repeat from Wednesday

Another chance to hear this morning’s show

13:00

of this morning’s show

Weekend Porridge

Behind Bars

ars is your award-winning daily feature show focusing on a different side of prison evening. We bring you the best chat, music and information to keep you informed son life and give a voice to your thoughts about life behind bars s Induction Show - all the basics about how prison works s Women Inside - focusing on life for female prisoners days Your Life - looking at how to keep your body and mind healthy ys The Inside Story - your in-depth guide to staying out of jail The Album Show - we play an entire album in full from start to finish ys The Love Bug - helping you keep in touch with family and friends on the outside s The Magazine - featuring the best bits of National Prison Radio

ge

Sun

Catch up with the latest show

12:00 Thur Fri

Radio?

We broadcast 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, into your cell. If your prison has National Prison Radio, you can listen through your TV by using the tuning buttons on your remote control.

21:00

The Rock Show Hear it again

22:00

21.30 Selector After Dark A mix from one of the UK’s finest DJs

The Selector Two hours of the best in new UK music, plus interviews, mixes and live sets

The Album Show A classic album in full

NPR Urban Hip-hop, RnB and dancehall

All About the Oldies Classic hits

Ministry of Sound Keeping you in touch with the sounds filling dancefloors on the outside

Sat

Sun

The Love

The Information Centre All the facts you need if you’re new to prison

Bug An hour of love songs and tips for writing letters home

1 January: NPR Book Club

The Album Show A classic album in full

Brixton Hour For HMP Brixton prisoners

Most Wanted Hear Monday’s show again

Brit 40 The UK’s number one chart show

The Rock Show The best in loud guitar music

21.30 Red Bull Music Academy Live recordings, interviews, mixes and documentary features

22.30 National Prison Radio Book Club Tune in to this month’s book reading, Dark Matter by Michelle Paver

Bob and Beyond A solid hour of reggae classics The Love Bug A repeat of yesterday’s hour of classic love songs

23:00

Late Night Love Bug Back-to-back love songs, seven nights a week - the perfect soundtrack to write letters home

Overnight

Dream Time Dreamy chill-out tunes and information on how to stay safe while you’re inside

For information, see edition at 07:00

International news from the studios of Sky News, every hour, on the hour, and the latest news from prisons across the top Music and Information country - every weekday at 10:00, 14:00, 16:00, 18:00, 21:00, 23:00 and in Porridge, National Prison Radio’s breakfast show.

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December-2011.pdf

of Prisons, told the House of Lords during the. Second Reading of the ..... Probation Officer or Chaplain about us ... also seems to be a general lack of motivation.

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