Prison Officers: Training

Ministry of Justice written question – answered at on 13 May 2024.

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Photo of Siobhain McDonagh Siobhain McDonagh Labour, Mitcham and Morden

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many prison staff (a) in total and (b) as a proportion of the prison workforce had received training to deal with extremist prisoners as of 26 April in each year since 2017.

Photo of Siobhain McDonagh Siobhain McDonagh Labour, Mitcham and Morden

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many people who had been convicted of offences under the Terrorism Act 2006 and related offences were being monitored by the Probation Service in each year since 2015.

Photo of Edward Argar Edward Argar The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice

The method for recording counter terrorism training data has changed over time, so the information requested cannot be provided. Since December 2021, over 17,000 directly employed HMPPS prison staff have been trained in counter terrorism (through the Awareness for Staff on Prevent Extremism and Counter Terrorism Strategy (ASPECTS) programme).

ASPECTS is delivered by counter-terrorist specialists and since 2017, all newly recruited Prison Officers have received ASPECTS training as part of their initial foundation training.

Data as a proportion of the workforce also cannot be provided as records include staff who have since left the prison service and may also include staff who have attended training more than once. The figure also does not include training figures for non-directly employed staff (i.e. those working in private prisons).

The below table shows the number of individuals convicted under Terrorism legislation (TACT), or of other offences considered to have a terrorism connection (TACT-connected), who were being managed by the Probation Service in each year since 2020.

Year

No. under probation supervision.

2020

132

2021

239

2022

217

2023

254

2024

234

Data can only be provided since 2020 as that is when the information began to be recorded centrally.

All high-risk offenders released on licence are managed under Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements, through which police, probation, the prison service and other agencies work together to keep the public safe. Upon release, terrorist offenders are subject to robust risk management, and stringent controls which severely limit their activity. This can include extended periods of electronic monitoring, accommodation in Approved Premises, and polygraph testing.

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