THE government was accused of totally failing Britain’s prisoners yesterday as inmate injuries and death tolls continue to soar.
Lib Dem Lord Marks said 2015 saw a record number of deaths in custody, in addition to a 20 per cent increase in assaults and a 25 per cent rise in incidents of self-harm.
Labour’s Baroness Corston added that women in prison, while only accounting for one in 23 prisoners, made up about 50 per cent of all self-harm incidents. The number of women who took their own lives in English prisons last year was also a record.
Responding, Justice Minister Lord Faulks said the causes of violence in prisons were “multi-factorial” and included the increasing use of psychoactive substances.
“It is a ceaseless challenge to try and prevent them coming into prison,” he said.
“We are taking steps to make it very difficult for these substances to be thrown over walls or secreted in body parts.”