Feltham a Young Offenders Institution

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 2:22 pm on 24th July 2019.

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Photo of Edward Argar Edward Argar The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice 2:22 pm, 24th July 2019

The hon. Gentleman is absolutely right to mention the 10 prisons project. It involves the adult male estate and is tackling other issues, but we are seeking to learn lessons from it that could be applied to the youth custodial estate as well. Where something works well in that context, it is absolutely right that we should look at it. He is also right to talk about the importance of direct and personal engagement by the Minister and the director of the service in turning round challenged institutions. I hope that I have sufficiently alluded to that fact in references to meetings with the hon. Member for Feltham and Heston and to my regular meetings with the director of the youth custody service, which are almost fortnightly at the moment. I am taking a personal interest in the operation of Feltham, and indeed the whole estate, and I also speak regularly to the governor herself. She leads a dedicated team who are working in difficult circumstances involving violence and self-harm. I have confidence in her and her team, and they know that as long as I am the Minister, I will do everything I can to support them. I am also sure that the Ministry of Justice will continue to do everything it can support her and her team.