INQUEST responds to MoJ statistics
28 April 2016
Statistics published by the Ministry of Justice today show a disturbing increase in self-inflicted deaths, self harm and homicides.
Self inflicted deaths up to March 2016 were almost double the number in 2013. Homicides are at an all time high.
In response to the figures INQUEST Director Deborah Coles said:
“These shocking statistics belie any suggestion that the Government is successfully pursuing a prison reform agenda. They reflect the desperate reality of prison life and the failure to protect those in its care. Prisons are places where the safety and dignity of prisoners is increasingly under threat. Every day INQUEST hears harrowing stories from the families of those who have died. Time and again deaths occur that reveal failures in treatment and care and a lack of learning from previous deaths. Until there is a dramatic reduction in the use of prison and a redirection of resources into community alternatives, then the endemic problem of death and harm will continue.”
‘You have clearly made yourselves a force to be reckoned with, a powerful instrument for good. In the process you have not only achieved real change in an aspect of our common life which would have commanded little attention or esteem were it not for your efforts, but you have at the same time offered enormous support to those bereaved people who long for a clear verdict on the death in custody of someone who means a great deal to them.’
– Dr Peter Selby, President of the National Council for Independent Monitoring Boards