Plaid Cymru responds to PM’s announcement of 10,000 new prison spaces
Liz Saville Roberts MP has said that Wales needs to take control of its own justice system, following Boris Johnson’s announcement that 10,000 new prison places will be created.
Over 2,000 prison spaces have recently been created in Wales with the Berwyn super prison in Wrexham - the second largest prison in Europe. The prison has faced criticism for failing to meet the needs of Wales and instead being used to house criminals from outside Wales.
Plaid Cymru’s opposition to the proposal for a second super prison, in Port Talbot, led to the plans being scrapped.
Frances Crook, the Chief Executive of the Howard League for Prison Reform said that England was “shoving its urban poor onto the hulks and shipping them to Wales”.
A recent cross-party Welsh Affairs Select Committee report criticised the Westminster Government’s approach to prison development in Wales and said that “any new prison development in Wales should give due regard to Welsh-specific requirements”.
Plaid Cymru has long called for the devolution of justice policy so that a rehabilitative system, that meets the need of the country, can be implemented. Justice is already devolved to Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Plaid Cymru’s Westminster Leader and Justice Spokesperson, Liz Saville Roberts MP, said:
“This is not about doing the best by inmates, but headlines for Boris Johnson.
“Wales will not be turned into a penal colony for England. Expert after expert has confirmed, Wales does not need more super prisons.
“Not only do we not need them, all the evidence is that they do not work.
“We already have a prison system not fit for us, but the country next door.
“Wales needs to take control of its own justice policy so it can create a system fit for our needs.”