LCCSA News, Practice and Procedure

LCCSA tackling problems with Wormwood Scrubs prison visits

PUBLISHED April 22, 2017

I will be attending a court users’ meeting at Isleworth Crown Court on Wednesday 26/4 on behalf of the association to talk about the problem of access at Scrubs.
The Head of Operations of the prison will be present at the meeting to hear our complaints. I ask members to assist me with issues they have been experiencing on visits. If you have examples can you send me detailed examples of specific problems by including at least the date and ideally a prison number of the person visited.
If you have any ideas for change please also send them. Currently my agenda will be:
1. Late start to checking visitors in the visitor center
2. Not allowing early entry to legal visitors – there used to be signs allowing solicitors in first if they arrived prior to the start time.
3. Not opening the searching section so that people are left outside the perimeter wall having been checked in at the visitors’ center.
4. Telling the visitor the prisoner has declined the visit when this is not the case.
5. Leaving it to prisoners to attend on ‘free flow’ and if they don’t you have to wait for up to an hour for them to be fetched.
6. I will ask for details of what notice prisoners’ are given of a visit in advance, how do they know to come on free flow.
7. Errors in the booking process- you have an email confirmation but the prisoner is not on the list.
8. Timely and detailed responses to prison visit requests on email.
9. I will request they have two booking-in stations – one for legals one for socials or one for first time visitors and one for the rest.
10. At least one evening slot per week to enable conferences (I assume we are not going to see a return to the old number of slots). Would people accept the loss of a day time slot to have one evening slot?
All input welcomed and if you want to join us please let me know. It is 16:30 on 26/4 at Isleworth.
Kind regards,
Mark Troman
LCCSA Secretary