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16 Jun 2015

Safety deteriorates in Wetherby prison

The Howard League for Penal Reform has responded to Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons’ report on Wetherby prison, published today (Tuesday 16 June). Frances Crook, Chief Executive of the Howard League for Penal Reform, said:

“This is the latest in a long series of reports showing how safety has deteriorated in prisons, but it is particularly concerning that this should be happening in an institution charged with caring for young people. Violence is rising in Wetherby, with attacks on boys and staff becoming more frequent and more severe. One in three children is locked up during the working day, and some spend as much as 23 hours a day in their cells. Inspectors found that some boys had to wait for up to a fortnight after arriving at the prison before they could even call their families. Why is it that, when it comes to locking up young people in prisons, we tolerate the unacceptable? We would never tolerate this treatment for our own children, and yet for some reason we allow for the children in Wetherby to be treated very differently.”

Notes to editors

  1. The Howard League for Penal Reform is the oldest penal reform charity in the world. It is a national charity working for less crime, safer communities and fewer people in prison.
  2. A copy of the Wetherby inspection report can be found on the HM Inspectorate of Prisons website.


Rob Preece
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