‘Disturbing’ self-harm charges and violence at youth prisons (News)


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Younger offenders self-harming is a significant concern, say jail reform charities

The “disturbing extent” of self-harm and violence within the UK’s younger offender institutes illustrate “why jail isn’t any place for a kid”, a charity has mentioned.

Parc Jail in Bridgend has the best fee of self-harm amongst youth jails in Wales and England, new figures present.

Wetherby had the biggest variety of self-harm incidents whereas Werrington in Staffordshire had the best complete variety of assaults on younger individuals.

The Howard League for Penal Reform described the statistics as worrying.

“These figures illustrate in graphic element why jail isn’t any place for a kid,” mentioned Andrew Neilson from the charity.

Parc Jail director Janet Wallsgrove insisted enhancements had been made.

In keeping with a Freedom of Data request by Cardiff College’s Wales Governance Centre, Parc’s youth wing had 64 incidents of self-harm in 2017.

The Welsh facility additionally had the best fee of assaults in opposition to younger individuals, recording 113 incidents in 2017.

Wetherby YOI in Yorkshire had the best complete variety of self-harm incidents with 146 whereas Werrington had the best complete variety of assaults on younger individuals with 209.

“We’re failing youngsters at a vital juncture of their lives,” added Mr Neilson.

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Parc Jail in Bridgend has round 1,665 inmates, together with round 40 younger offenders

“If we lock them up and expose them to such excessive ranges of violence, making it extra and never much less doubtless that these younger individuals will go on to commit additional crimes on launch.”

Parc’s younger offenders’ unit is connected to a class B males’s jail.

Earlier this 12 months, the Welsh Affairs Choose Committee heard that Parc was trying to recruit behaviour analysts to take care of a number of the violence and self-harm issues.

Self-harm fee in Younger offender establishments in Wales and England (per 100)

  • Parc, Bridgend – 160 (common inhabitants of 40)
  • Cookham Wooden, Kent – 43.1 (common inhabitants of 144)
  • Feltham, Middlesex – 27.1 (common inhabitants of 129)
  • Werrington, Staffordshire – 102 (common inhabitants of 98)
  • Wetherby, Yorkshire – 79.1 (common inhabitants of 184)

“The info offered right here reveal the disturbing extent of self-harm and violence being skilled by youngsters in custody,” mentioned Dr Robert Jones, from the Wales Governance Centre at Cardiff College.

“These newest figures elevate pressing questions over security ranges at Younger Offender Establishments in England and Wales together with HMYOI Parc, a youngsters’s unit in Wales located inside one of many largest prisons within the UK.”

Parc Jail’s Impartial Monitoring Board mentioned “additional evaluation” of the figures have been wanted.

However the jail’s director Ms Wallsgrove mentioned: “These figures are practically a 12 months previous, and since 2017 incidents of self-harm at YOI Parc have fallen considerably by 80%, and are decrease than at comparable institutions.”

“Our devoted workers deal with the younger individuals in our care with respect, problem inappropriate behaviour and guarantee a broad vary of instructional and purposeful actions can be found.”


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