HM Prison and Probation Service: Equality Assessment for Fitness Testing

Women and Equalities – in the House of Commons at on 30 March 2022.

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Photo of Justin Madders Justin Madders Shadow Minister (Future of Work), Shadow Minister (Business and Industrial Strategy)

If she will undertake an equalities impact assessment of HM Prison and Probation Service’s equality assessment for fitness testing.

Photo of James Cartlidge James Cartlidge Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Ministry of Justice) , Assistant Whip

The HMPPS staff fitness testing policy was reviewed, updated and published in 2021. An equality impact assessment was undertaken in 2021, and it remains a live document. It will be reviewed and updated regularly as work in this area progresses. HMPPS staff networks, diversity and inclusion experts and trade unions were fully consulted during the policy review, and they contributed to the equality analysis.

Photo of Justin Madders Justin Madders Shadow Minister (Future of Work), Shadow Minister (Business and Industrial Strategy)

The Minister will be aware of concerns, particularly from the Prison Officers Association, that far more female officers than male officers are failing this test. Will he meet the Prison Officers Association to discuss this issue?

Photo of James Cartlidge James Cartlidge Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Ministry of Justice) , Assistant Whip

The hon. Gentleman takes a consistent interest in this point, and I am happy to mention his question to the Minister of State, Ministry of Justice, my hon. Friend Victoria Atkins. I can confirm that, since prison officer fitness testing resumed last July, 90% of female officers passed on the first attempt, and none failed by the third attempt.