Prisoners: Females

Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 28th September 2021.

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Photo of David Lammy David Lammy Shadow Lord Chancellor and Shadow Secretary of State for Justice

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what the average distance is for a woman placed in the prison system to their home.

Photo of Victoria Atkins Victoria Atkins The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice, Minister for Afghan resettlement

As of 17 September 2021, a woman in prison was on average 46 miles from their origin address.

There are complex and wide-ranging issues involved in transferring and locating prisoners, and allocation decisions must reflect both the specific needs and circumstances of the prisoner, including their security assessment, as well as the operating environment and range of services at the receiving prison.

HMPPS is committed to ensuring, where practicable, that prisoners are accommodated as close as possible to their resettlement communities and families. Whilst this is a priority, it is not always possible due to a variety of factors including wider population pressures, or where women have specific sentence planning needs which can only be met at certain establishments.

Around 97% of prisoners have an origin location; i.e. addresses that are recorded in our central IT system. If no address is given, an offender’s committal court address is used as a proxy for the area in which they are resident. This information is included in the data provided above. Those with no recorded origin are typically foreign nationals or those recently received into custody.

The numerical information provided has been drawn from administrative IT systems, which as with any large scale recording system are subject to possible error with data entry and processing.

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