Understanding the Rules and Regulations of UK Prisons

Prison Info

Understanding the rules and regulations of UK prisons is crucial for those who are incarcerated, their families, and anyone else who comes into the contact with the prison system. Here we will explain everything you need to know.

1. Legislation

The primary legislation that governs the UK prison system is the Prison Act 1952 and the Prison Rules 1999. Though amendments and secondary regulations have been introduced, these form the bedrock of current prison rules and regulations.

2. Sentence Planning

Upon arrival at a prison, all prisoners have a sentence plan created. These are designed to assist prisoners use their time effectively towards rehabilitation. The plan also has implications for a prisoner’s eventual release and parole.

3. Prisoner Rights

Prisoners in UK retain a number of rights which include: food, water, shelter, legal rights including access to solicitor and court proceedings, protection from bullying and violence, and medical care.

4. Categories of Prisons

  • Category A: These are high-security prisons, housing prisoners whose escape would be highly dangerous.
  • Category B: These prisons house those who do not require maximum security but are too high-risk for open conditions.
  • Category C: These prisons house low-risk prisoners who cannot be trusted in an open prison.
  • Category D: These open prisons house low-risk prisoners who are trusted to serve their sentence with minimal supervision.

5. Privileges

Good behaviour is rewarded. Privileges can include more visits, bigger spending budgets, and increased access to rehabilitation activities.

6. Personal Officer Scheme

Each prisoner is assigned a Personal Officer, who is a member of the prison staff. This person acts as a guide to navigate the rules and regulations of the prison and to be an initial point of contact.

7. Work and Education

Prisoners are encouraged to engage in work and educational activities. These not only provide meaningful activity during their sentence, but also equip them with skills to better integrate into society upon release.

8. Complaints

Every prison has a complaints system in place and prisoners have the right to bring a complaint, without fear of retaliation. Complaints can cover a wide range of aspects, including quality of food, medical treatment, or staff behaviour.

9. Release and Parole

When a prisoner completes their sentence, or demonstrates significant commitment to rehabilitation, they may be released on parole. Parole is conditional and subject to a prisoner’s behaviour.

10. Visitation Rights

Just because you’re in prison, doesn’t mean you give up your rights to connect with your loved ones. Prisoners have visitation rights and can maintain communication with friends and family.

Please remember that this is only a summary of rules and regulations governing UK prisons and every prison may have specific rules.

What is the cheapest way to call from Prison?

It is by far cheaper to call landline numbers - however landlines are becoming less common in homes & it is by far more convenient to call your loved ones mobile incase you are calling when they aren't at home. Our call packages gives you the best of both worlds - landline call pricing, but the prisoner can call you on your mobile!

Is it cheaper to call a landline from prison?

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