UK: Birmingham prison taken over from G4S by Govt. following reports of "appalling" squalor & violence; co. welcomes move

On 20 August 2018, the UK Government announced it would be taking over Birmingham Prison from the private firm G4S, after an inspection uncovered “appalling” conditions, squalor and violence. The Ministry of Justice has assumed control of the establishment for at least six months, after which the prison will be returned to G4S if sufficient progress has been made. G4S welcomed the move, saying the prison, which it has managed since October 2011, faces “exceptional challenges”.

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20 August 2018

G4S shares dip after government takes over Birmingham prison

Author: Katie Martin, Financial Times

Shares in G4S dropped by 2.5 per cent after the UK government assumed control of Birmingham prison, which it runs. The jail was graded “poor” across all four key areas in a report made public on Monday. Chief inspector Peter Clarke said he was “astounded” that the prison had “been allowed to deteriorate so dramatically over the 18 months since the previous inspection”. He added that he had “no confidence in the ability of the prison to make improvements”. G4S took over the running of HMP Birmingham in 2011 on a 15-year contract, as part of a wider move to bring in more competition into the prison service. A few minutes into trading, shares were down by 2.5 per cent at 245.9p

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19 August 2018

Government takes over ‘appalling’ HMP Birmingham

Author: ITV News

Staff at one of Britain’s largest prisons were found asleep or locked in offices during an inspection that uncovered “appalling” squalor and violence, a watchdog has said, as it emerged the Government is taking over the privately-run jail...

The Ministry of Justice has now assumed control of the establishment from G4S for at least six months.

G4S welcomed the move, saying the prison, which it has managed since October 2011, faces “exceptional challenges”...

After an unannounced inspection of the prison concluded earlier this month, Mr Clarke [Chief Inspector of Prisons] triggered the “urgent notification” scheme to alert the Government to his findings...

“There has clearly been an abject failure of contract management and delivery,” he concluded...

Jerry Petherick, managing director of G4S Custody & Detention Services, said: “HMP Birmingham is an inner-city remand prison which faces exceptional challenges including increasingly high levels of prisoner violence towards staff and fellow prisoners.

“The well-being and safety of prisoners and prison staff is our key priority and we welcome the six month step-in and the opportunity to work with the Ministry of Justice to urgently address the issues faced at the prison.”

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