2017-36 – Safety

Safety

Hello friend,

This is linked to a recent previous blog (not hard to work out). Recently, this prison has had a number of new arrivals who, it would appear, would rather not be here. There have already been some incidents.

To explain further: whilst some prisons separate, vulnerable prisoners’ and ‘the main’, there is no separation at HMP Wakefield. VPs (vulnerable prisoners) could be VPs because of their conviction, they are ex-police or ex-prison officers, they have run up debt on ‘the main’ or they are informants. Any of these categories could make them a target to a normal location prisoner.

I am going to make a prediction: if HMP Wakefield do not take some decisive action, one or more of these arrivals are going to get seriously injured (or worse) by one or more of prisoners here. Why would anyone care, right? Well, despite the dehumanising from certain quarters, everyone in here is a human being with mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers and children.

There is a palpable sense of foreboding; a lot of the guys in here are really on edge.

This sort of stuff always reminds me of the scene in the original Frankenstein movie where the villagers, armed with pitchforks and torches, pursue the creature into the castle. It’s abhorrence more akin to Nazi Germany that any civilised society. Who’s the monster?

Be happy; be safe (because we’re neither right now).

Graham Coutts, 19th March 2017

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