Protesters target ‘unsafe’ Durham

    The mother of a young woman who died in custody joined a protest
    against “unsafe” conditions at Durham Prison women’s unit last
    week.

    Pauline Campbell, whose 18-year-old daughter, Sarah, died at
    Styal Prison in 2003, was protesting after the death on 21 August
    of Durham inmate Louise Giles, apparently by suicide.

    Last year, the chief inspector of prisons, Anne Owers, said
    Durham was “unsuitable” for holding women and recommended its
    closure. This week, she called for inmates to be removed as a
    “matter of urgency” after an unannounced inspection found that
    conditions for the remaining six women had deteriorated.

    According to the inspection report, four of the women had been
    involved in nearly one-third of the self-harm incidents in the
    entire prison from March to May this year, and also accounted for
    seven out of 15 suicide attempts in which prisoners had nearly
    died.

    Phil Wheatley, director general of the Prison Service, said the
    women’s unit would close by the end of this month.

     

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