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Last Updated: Tuesday, 11 July 2006, 00:11 GMT 01:11 UK
Safety concerns at Risley prison
Prison guard locking jail door
Around a third of inmates felt unsafe at some point in HMP Risley
A government inspection of a Cheshire prison has raised concerns over safety.

Around a third of inmates have felt unsafe at HMP Risley, near Warrington, and there is a lack of visible staffing on wings when prisoners are unlocked.

The report, by HM Inspectorate of Prisons, also declared weaknesses in anti-bullying, suicide and self-harm prevention work at the category C jail.

However, progress had made progress in reducing drug smuggling at the prison - which holds nearly 1,100 male inmates.

It is still not a sufficiently safe prison and more focus is required on violence reduction
Anne Owers, Chief Inspector of Prisons

Anne Owers, Chief Inspector of Prisons, said: "This is the second consecutive report that has raised concerns about safety at Risley.

"It is still not a sufficiently safe prison and more focus is required on violence reduction, supported by a more proactive approach to prisoner supervision and a continued emphasis on combating illegal drugs."

Drug tests

Phil Wheatley, Director General of the Prison Service, added: "I acknowledge that there is still work to be done at Risley and this report has highlighted some important areas that the prison needs to address.

"Risley is already taking steps to improve safety and reduce violence within the prison and it continues to be the establishment's key priority.

"Mandatory drug tests show that the supply of drugs is being brought firmly under control with a 55% reduction in positive tests since 2003/4."

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