A recent report announced that 30 of the old prisons have to be replaced by 12 “super-jails” gathering thousands of prisoners.
According to ex-Ministry of Justice Deputy director Kevin Lockyer this would save £600m annually but the Prison Reform Trust claims that spending money on gigantic jails would be a huge mistake.
Deputy Director said that the appearance and the functioning of the new prisoners would be just like those of campuses.
He suggested the closing of Brixton, Feltham, Holloway, Pentonville, Wandsworth and Wormwood Scrubs, which will lead to a high demand of legal documents- especially employment documents and HR policies.
In his words with the changes proposed the prison budget would save about 20% and the budget of Ministry of Justice would save 9%.
Mr Lockyer said: “In fact, newer prisons outperform older ones, regardless of their size. New hub prisons will not only reduce reoffending and improve safety, they will also deliver vast financial savings and better value for money for the taxpayer.”
He stated the decision of the problem was not trying to reduce the number of prisoners and jails but thinking more carefully about the cutting of cost per prisoner.
The report pointed out that almost a quarter of the prisons were built in the Victorian era and most of the others were built in the 1960s and 1970s. The money for the new prisoners needs to come as borrowings from the public sector.
On the other hand, Juliet Lyon Prison Reform Trust director declared taxpayers’ money should not be spent on super-sized jails as the rates of crimes and reoffending were falling. She added that prison governors, prison inspectors and prison officers also did not like the idea.
“There is scope to close some outdated prisons and reinvest the money saved into effective community solutions to crime.”