To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, with reference to Report on an unannounced inspection of HMP & YOI Chelmsford by HM Chief Inspector of Prisons, published on 24 November 2021, if he will make an assessment of the adequacy of the steps taken in response to past HM Inspectorate of Prisons reports into HMP & YOI Chelmsford since 2018.
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, with reference to Report on an unannounced inspection of HMP & YOI Chelmsford by HM Chief Inspector of Prisons, published on 24 November 2021, if he will set a timescale for improvement at HMP & YOI Chelmsford to reach a rating of Reasonably Good against the healthy prison tests of (a) safety, (b) respect, (c) purposeful activity and (d) rehabilitation and release planning.
Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons provides invaluable independent scrutiny and found that insufficient progress had been made in improving HMP & YOI Chelmsford since 2018. Following an unacceptable inspection in August, urgent measures to accelerate improvements were announced, including more staff training, increased use of the body scanner to detect illicit items, a reduction in the prison’s population and improvements to cells.
Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS) will publish a full Action Plan by 16th December 2021, addressing the key concerns and recommendations raised by the Inspectorate in its recent report. HMPPS would also welcome an Independent Review of Progress in line with Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons’ standard 8–12-month timescales. Whilst this would not result in revised ratings against the healthy prison tests, this would provide an independent judgement of progress against the key recommendations.