Giles Watling, MP for Clacton, has questioned the Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, Rt Hon David Gauke MP, on the steps the Government is taking to introduce technology to assist with rehabilitation in prisons. You can read the exchange below, and watch it here.
"What progress has been made on introducing technology to assist with rehabilitation in prisons?"
"As a pilot, we have introduced basic computers and telephones into prison cells in HMPs Berwyn and Wayland so that prisoners can manage some of their day-to-day tasks such as ordering meals, making healthcare appointments and booking social visits. This technology also gives prisoners access to learning opportunities and basic educational content, and enables them to telephone their families in a private environment. Prisoners are not given access to the internet."
"Can the Minister reassure me that digital technology in prisons will allow prisoners to access only educational opportunities, rather than the sometimes murky wider digital world?"
"I can provide my hon. Friend with that assurance. The digital technology currently available in prisons provides strictly controlled access to learning and training facilities. It is also used to provide opportunities for prisoners to access services within the prison environment to enable them to manage their time and activities while inside. There is no access to the internet, and strict security control prohibits access to the wider digital world."