published: 2 May 2018
INQUEST has today released Still Dying on the Inside: Examining Deaths in Women’s Prisons. The report highlights the lack of action from successive governments and puts forward recommendations to redirect resources from criminal justice to community-based services and close women’s prisons.
Still Dying on the Inside was launched yesterday evening at a parliamentary meeting hosted by Baroness Helena Kennedy QC. INQUEST’s work with bereaved families seeks to make visible the women behind the statistics and we heard powerful and moving testimonies from family members of women who have died.
Ninety-four women have died in prison since the 2007 publication of Baroness Jean Corston’s ground-breaking review of women in the criminal justice system. Speaking at the launch, Baroness Corston said she felt ‘let down, but not defeated’ and the recommendations of our report, ‘if implemented, would save lives’.
Key recommendations from the report:
- Redirect resources from criminal justice to welfare, health, housing and social care.
- Divert women away from the criminal justice system.
- Halt prison building and commit to an immediate reduction in the prison population.
- Review sentencing decisions and policy.
- An urgent review of the deaths of women following release from prison.
- Ensure access to justice and learning for bereaved families.
- Build a national oversight mechanism for implementing official recommendations.
Please share the report widely amongst your networks.