If I was a Criminal Lawyer the conditions of the Prisons would be a pressing concern from a point of view of the whole Legal Process from Arrest under PACE 1984 to the Court (Mags or Crown?) to Sentencing and Incarceration.
Prisoners are denied Legal Aid which means they cannot bring Cases for Rapes that occur in Prison (from Save UK Justice Convo with Howard League and Law Student)
The Government wants to deny Prisoners books which will hold back their Rehabilitation. (ibid)
Mothers are being denied access to their babies criminal!(ibid)
The Government is forcing the PDS system on Defendants instead of them being represented by the Independent Criminal bar this affects advocacy/client repping meaning Defendants won’t be representation they need in terms of advocates with skills, experience because the Govt is pauperizing the Criminal Bar.
Advocates are leaving the Criminal Bar because they can’t afford to practice.
Prisoners conjugal rights are being affected as well in a move to further curtail inmates legitimate human Rights.(essential for keeping marriages/long term relationships strong)
Rights to a Fair Trial Article 6
Right not to be degraded (Article 3)
The Prison is significantly overcrowded a common problem with Prisons in UK today.
Features of Prison
Vulnerable Prisoners Wing
First Night Wing is not helpful to incoming Prisoners because they are entering a chaotic environment instead of being able to be guided into a safe place.
Sex Offenders:80 who are described as being in denial about their Offences no strategy in place to manage this and important issue that needs tackling by Management.
Reception;newly built helps Prisoners needs to be identified on arrival.
Drug Testing: use of illicit drugs relatively low
Violence Levels:comparable with similar Prisons
Use of Force decreasing. Always a good sign
Self Harm lower than other Prisons. A good thing. High self harm levels connotes Prison chaos. Prisons need to be run with care for the inmates.
Prisoners Daily Routine Prisoners spending more than half a day locked up halved. Prisoners need to get out the cells to regroup, recover. All day incarceration harms Inmates.
Purposeful Activity Places now sufficient to meet need essential for rehabilitaiton.
Case Management Lincoln Action Trust ensured impressive Case Management helped Prisoners into the Community.
Resettlement [into the Community)
Offender Assessments problems with
Sentence Planning problems with
Offender Supervisors problems with. Prisoners need to know how long their Sentence will be at the outset. N.ot sorting this out means disruption for their lives which are already disrupted enough as it is
Incidents/Suicides of Prisoners high suicide levels demoralising to prison.
Prisoners are under assault by the Government because the Government wants to deny Prisoners access to books which denies Prison Code.
Failing Grayling wants to unjustly inflict further punishment on Prisoners, the mere fact that they are in Prison under Prison Code? (from a Lawyer) is punishment enough.
A very helpful and illucidating Article from Criminal Law and Justice Weekly.
Just reading and writing this Blog Post has been most educating!