Date of visit: 18 September 2018
Visit number: 47
Prison type: Category B Local
Senior managers said ‘a strong culture’ of respect and rehabilitation forged a staff-prisoner rapport that ‘visitors often commented on’. They highlighted staff communication (including weekly manager newsletters cascaded via ‘huddle’ team briefings, quarterly full staff meetings, and monthly The term by which Governors are known in private sector prisons ‘People First’ meetings), and a ‘bright ideas’ scheme. Staff recognition (including peer-voted ‘Star’ & ‘Team’ of the Month, and ‘on the spot’ thank you cards used by staff & prisoners and entered in prize draws) was emphasised, as were focus groups and surveys of prisoners & families. ‘Excellent’ education & training had a ‘strong’ vocational focus with qualifications ‘attached to all jobs’ and links to employers. They rated the range of Offending Behaviour Programme – a structured programme aimed at reducing prisoners’ reoffending by addressing particular criminogenic needs, the prison’s cleanliness & furnishings etc, and in-cell phones & Touch-screen terminals, normally on the wings, which allow prisoners to deal with many ‘domestic’ issues, such as submitting “apps” and ordering “canteen”. They also emphasised family involvement in ‘Celebration of Achievement’ events, and Assessment, Care in Custody and Teamwork – multi-disciplinary care planning process for prisoners identified as being at risk of suicide or self-harm and challenging prisoner reviews. The weekly reviewed, multi-disciplinary action plans for the 10 most challenging prisoners were a ‘real positive’. They also praised the gym and its links to local sports teams, and the Committee of prisoner representatives meeting with senior management to discuss issues relevant to the management and care of prisoners in the jail, wing reps, and monthly meetings with The senior manager responsible for the wings / residential areas of a prison.
The prisoners agreed with managers about the notable staff-prisoner rapport, prisoner consultation, phones & Kiosks, and OBPs (and ‘rehabilitation support generally’). They praised family support and the ‘very good’ visits, including family days and a creche. The drug services and recovery wing were ‘fantastic’ and ‘brilliant’.
The Officers praised the An informal term referring to a prison’s Governor (or Director in private jails) as ‘very visible’ & ‘approachable’, and also valued staff communication & recognition (including ‘on the spot’ thank you cards), the ‘good quality’ and ‘wide range’ of OBPs, education & vocational training, and the ‘excellent’ drug services and recovery wing. They also liked the local ‘strengths based’ recruitment approach, which they felt had led to better and ‘more resilient’ staff coming on board.