The Prison Service is a section of the Committee for Home Affairs.
The main purpose of the Prison Service is to serve the public by keeping in custody those committed by the courts. The Prison Service's duty is to look after them with humanity and to help them lead law abiding lives in custody and after release.
The Prison Service's role in safeguarding children is;
- To safeguard and promote the welfare of child prisoners under eighteen years old.
- The protection of children who communicate with prisoners via phone calls, letters and visits.
- Mothers and babies in custody
- The protection of potential child victims in the community who may be subject to abuse by a serving prisoner on escorted or temporary release.
- The protection of child victims or potential child victims once a prisoner is released from custody
- Working with other interested agencies to share information and participate in making joint and informed decisions that seek to safeguard and protect children at risk of harm.
This is achieved by;
- Two senior managers nominated as Child Protection Coordinators who are responsible for all aspects of Public Protection
- Overarching policy and that includes procedures for dealing with incidents or disclosures of child abuse or neglect before or during custody
- Suicide and self-harm prevention and anti-bullying strategies
- Procedures for dealing proactively, rigorously, fairly and promptly with complaints and formal requests
- Action to manage and develop effective working partnerships with other organisations, including voluntary and community organisations, that can strengthen the support provided to young people and their families during custody and on release
- An initial assessment, on reception into custody, to identify the needs, abilities and aptitudes of the young person, and the formulation of a sentence plan (including an individual learning plan) designed to address those needs, followed by regular sentence plan reviews
- Provision of education, training and personal development in line with the young person's identified needs
- Action to encourage the young person and their family to take an active role in the preparation and subsequent reviews of their sentence plan, so that they are able to contribute to, and influence, what happens to them in custody and following release.
- An initial assessment for all prisoners who are received into prison custody to determine if any safeguarding restrictions need to be imposed to protect a child.
- Worried about a child?
- Case Conference
- After the Initial Case Conference
- Supplementary Guidance