Our Director, Richard Garside, has written to the Justice Secretary, Liz Truss, calling for her to publish a secret Ministry of Justice report on the economic impact of new prisons.
On Wednesday, the Ministry of Justice announced plans to build four new prisons in Yorkshire, Wigan, Rochester and Port Talbot. According to the Ministry, the new prisons will 'act as a boost to regional economies' and create 'new opportunities for local businesses.'
According to the Justice Secretary, the prisons would be an 'economic lifeline for the local community – creating hundreds of jobs for local people'.
The Ministry's claims of a jobs bonanza are based on a secret report written by consultants, Peter Brett Associates, called Economic Impact of a New Prison. The report remains unpublished, despite a Freedom of Information request made by our Senior Associate, Rebecca Roberts.
In his letter to the Justice Secretary, Richard writes:
As the Ministry embarks on this latest stage in the prison-building programme, it is important that its plans are subject to proper scrutiny by parliamentarians, independent experts and members of the public, particularly in those areas where the new prisons are planned to be built. The publication of the Economic Impact of a New Prison report will assist the scrutiny process and I ask that it be published without delay.
Richard's letter can be downloaded below.