WE ARE A MAGAZINE ABOUT LAW AND JUSTICE | AND THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE TWO
July 13 2024
WE ARE A MAGAZINE ABOUT LAW AND JUSTICE | AND THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE TWO
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Prison Governors warn that prisons will be full in ‘days’

Prison Governors warn that prisons will be full in ‘days’

The Prison Governors’ Association has warned political party leaders that prisons will be ‘full within a matter of days’.

The Association called on the new government to take immediate action. Unless this issue was addressed by emergency legislation, there would be nowhere for police to detain suspects; it would be impossible to address the court backlog; and the public would be put at risk.

The Association stated that there is ‘no other option’ but immediate legislation, to release prisoners who have served 40% of their sentence. They stated that ignoring this would lead to ‘peril’. This call echoes the recommendations of the Center for Justice Innovation, reported on The Justice Gap.

Last month, the government announced ‘Operation Early Dawn’, which delayed trials and released prisoners on bail to relieve overcrowding. This followed ‘Operation Safeguard’, where police cells were repurposed to serve as prison accommodation. Further government operations have been releasing prisoners early. This was initially 18 days, but later increased to 60 and now 70 days early.

On Friday 22nd June, there were only 1,383 places left in prisons across the UK. Over 16,000 prisoners are on remand, awaiting trial. There are presently 67,000 cases awaiting trial in the crown court.

Labour have made a manifesto commitment to build more prisons, as have the Conservatives. The Conservatives additionally committed to increasing the number of life sentences without parole.

England and Wales presently have the highest incarceration rate in Western Europe.

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