No toilet roll, no bread: Report reveals chaos at G4S-run Oakwood prison – response by Howard League for Penal Reform.

Responding to the Independent Monitoring Board annual report* on G4S-managed Oakwood prison, Frances Crook, Chief Executive of the Howard League for Penal Reform (the oldest penal reform charity in the world), said: “This report paints an appalling picture of the chaos that has reigned at Oakwood since it opened last year.

Serious questions must be asked of Chris Grayling and the Ministry of Justice, which holds responsibility for contracts, building design, maintaining safety at the jail and ultimately for public safety.

Why did they allow prisoners to be transferred to this disastrous institution when it was clearly in no fit state to hold anyone?

How can ministers expect G4S to manage healthcare, education and training at Oakwood, when they can’t even navigate the complexities of providing toilet roll or a slice of bread? This Ministry of Justice wishful thinking is bordering on irresponsibility.

How much more evidence does the government need before it stops handing over justice services to private security corporations like G4S? The army had to run Olympic security for them, their tagging contract was handed to the Serious Fraud Office and prisoners have taken over their jails.

Chris Grayling thinks Oakwood is a perfect example of what the private sector achieves in justice. We agree.”

* A copy of the Independent Monitoring Board report can be found at

Prison Bars by Andrew bardwell via Wikimedia Commons

Prison Bars by Andrew bardwell via Wikimedia Commons

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