Socialist Worker

Close child prisons

Issue No. 2093

The chief inspector of prisons called last week for a privately run child prison to be shut due to alarming levels of restraint used against children.

An inspection of the Oakhill secure training centre near Milton Keynes, which locks up children as young as 12, found restraint was used 757 times in just nine months. Some 532 of these incidents used the highest level of restraint involving three adults holding down a child.

In the recent past restraint incidents in other child prisons have led to the deaths of 14 year old Adam Rickwood and 15 year old Gareth Myatt. The government says these techniques are “under review”.

But while it is “reviewing”, children continue to face violent restraint in a system that locks up people at a younger age than anywhere else in western Europe.

Oakhill should be shut – and so should all the other child prisons.

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What We Think
Tue 18 Mar 2008, 19:07 GMT
Issue No. 2093
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