The Independent Monitoring Board (IMB) at HMP Erlestoke – made up of volunteers appointed by ministers to check that prisoners are treated humanely – today published its annual report for 2018/19.
The IMB at Erlestoke found that overall prisoners at Erlestoke are treated fairly and humanely due to a responsive management team.
The Board considered that with the recruitment of extra staff, the provision of healthcare was satisfactory and that mental healthcare had improved since last year.
However, the Board remain concerned that:
- A lack of sufficient escorts has meant that some prisoners have had to wait lengthy periods for hospital appointments.
- There is considerable concern that there was a lack of healthcare engagement by the prison in respect of the initial assessment of those prisoners found to be at risk of self-harm.
- The establishment of the Government Facility Services Ltd has not lead to an improvement in the provision of repairs and renovations in the prison, and much of the fabric of the prison is ageing and of poor quality.
- There was a lack of implementation of courses leading to the acquisition of employable goals.
IMB Erlestoke Chair, Nicholas Rheinberg, said: However, once again the education department is to be congratulated on an excellent arts and literature festival which was held in March. The farms and gardens team of prisoners have not only grown fruit and vegetables used in the prison kitchen and sold in the farm shop but have also maintained a colourful display of flower beds and borders around the prison considerably enhancing the environment.