UTTOXETER’S MP has welcomed the findings of a report into HMP Sudbury after inspectors slammed the jail for failing in resettling prisoners.
Andrew Griffiths said he was ‘not surprised’ by the findings of the inspection, which also found its public protection arrangements were ‘not robust enough’.
The criticism comes in a report published by Nick Hardwick, chief inspector of prisons, following an unannounced inspection.
Mr Griffiths said: “I have to say I am not surprised by the findings of the inspection and this is something I have written to the Justice Secretary about on numerous occasions to raise with him.
“It has been clear to me that people were being released too early and Sudbury was not dealing with the prisoners correctly.
“That was why I called on Chris Grayling (Justice Secretary) to investigate what was going on. I am extremely relieved the authority has now identified those problems and action can now be taken to ensure the safety of all those living near to the prison. We cannot have a situation where local residents are being put in danger because the release system isn’t being managed properly.”
Michael Spurr, chief executive officer of the National Offender Management Service, said a review of work required had been carried out and Sudbury would receive ‘additional resources’.
Sudbury Prison held 561 adult male category D prisoners during the inspection, carried out from October 21 to November 1, 2013.
The report reads: “The central task of the prison was to prepare these men for release by addressing their practical resettlement needs and reducing the risk they would reoffend. The prison was failing badly in this task and this impacted on all areas of its work.”
Inspectors were also concerned to find it had focused its resettlement efforts on providing work experience through release on temporary licence but there was little attempt to link the experience to jobs that might be available to a convict in his home area.
The report said the offender management unit had a ‘low profile’, some supervisors lacked ‘adequate training’ and the segregation unit was ‘cold, dirty, poorly ventilated and with filthy toilets.’
The report stated inspectors were pleased to find the environment was ‘reasonable’, health care had improved since the last inspection and prisoners had ‘very good amounts of time out of their cells’.