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McInnes questions First Minister on 14 hours siege at HMP Grampian

May 15, 2014 3:15 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrat justice spokesperson and North East MSPAlison McInnesAlison McInnes Alison McInnes today questioned the First Minister on reports that prisoners at Scotland's newest prison instigated a serious disturbance and 14 hour siege, causing significant damage to HMP & YOI Grampian.

During First Minister's Questions in the Scottish Parliament today, Mrs McInnes highlighted the incident at the new prison and asked the First Minister what steps the Scottish Government will take to ensure good order is maintained in the future.

In response, the First Minister, Alex Salmond MSP, confirmed that the incident has ended.

He said that "it is not unknown for new prisons to have this sort of incident - it has happened a number of times in the past". He criticised those behind the "unacceptable behaviour".

Commenting after First Minister's Questions, Ms McInnes said:

"That this is the third serious incident in two months at the new prison in Peterhead suggests it is more than just teething problems.

"While this new facility is a great improvement upon the old North East prisons, HMP & YOI Grampian nonetheless faces significant challenges. It has a greater mix of inmates than its predecessors and has recruited a significant number of new staff, reportedly around 100.

"The Scottish Prison Service must ensure that this new facility has the resources, experience and know-how to deal with difficult situations before they escalate into serious incidents such as this."