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28 September 2006

Stevenson Comments On Peterhead Prison Report

Banff & Buchan MSP Stewart Stevenson has welcomed the publication of HM Chief Inspector of Prison’s report on Peterhead Prison.

The report follows a full inspection focussing on prisoner conditions and treatment. However, the report includes a call to the Scottish Executive to decide on the future of the prison.

Mr Stevenson commented:

“The Chief Inspector of Prisons makes an important point when states that prisoners feel safer at Peterhead than they would at any other prison. Only sex offenders who feel safe in prison are likely to engage with the consequences of their offending and to change their behaviour.

”Peterhead's record in dealing with the most serious of sex offenders is second to none and the contribution of staff to reforming these difficult prisoners is exemplary and the contribution they make to making Scotland’s streets safer is immeasurable.

”The ongoing uncertainty continues to hang over dedicated prison officers and specialist staff. With the consultation completed many months ago it is time for a proposal for re-build to be tabled. The Criminal Justice Authorities have a role in working out the approach they need to take to a new prison for North-east. They must neither be allowed to delay a decision on the new prison nor should they be permitted to re-open to debate the issues covered by the consultation.”
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