In the News: Prison report highlights a rise of self harm incidents in 2014

The number of inmates who self harmed at a Northumberland prison rose dramatically last year, a new study has revealed.

The damning findings are highlighted in the recently-published annual report of the Independent Monitoring Board at HMP Northumberland for 2014.

The number of self harm incidents at the Acklington-based Category C unit was 50 per cent higher than in 2013, the document states.

While the board acknowledges that the number of incidents is relatively low compared to similar prisons, it has demanded to know what steps will be taken in 2015 to halt the rise.

On top of this, the number of incidents involving damage to prison property each month in 2014 was three times higher than in 2013, despite offenders having to meet the cost of the damage.

The board also received complaints from vulnerable prisoners claiming intimidation and bullying from other inmates and states that there were examples of physical violence.

However, the board has welcomed the reduction in levels of substance abuse, saying the number of prisoners failing random drug tests has almost halved in comparison to 2013.


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