Covid has killed 16 prison staff and 2,000 are off sick with the virus
COVID-19 has killed 16 members of prison staff since the beginning of the pandemic, shocking new figures reveal.
A further 2,000 prison workers are off sick with the virus, leaving jails housing dangerous criminals understaffed, it is claimed.
⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates
Data from the Prison Officers’ Association shows that eight per cent of all jail staff are currently not working due to the virus.
Figures from Britain’s biggest trade union for prison workers also show that 55 inmates have died of coronavirus this year.
And 66 jails are presently suffering from outbreaks of the virus, more than half of the 117 prisons operating in the UK.
It comes as a 52-year-old prison officer based at Elmley Prison on the Isle of Sheppey in Kent died from the virus last week.
Mark Fairhurst, chairman of the Prison Officers’ Association, said: “Measures are difficult to adhere to in a prison because of confined space.
“We’re doing all we possibly can and trying to stick to the regime and balance between providing a regime and maintaining family contact to prisoners.
“I think we have controlled it more effectively than society, because of the restrictions we’ve put in place and the safety measures we’re adhering to.
“I think everybody needs to be commended for it because it could be so much worse.
“I think we deserve an accolade.”
In April, Public Health England published a report predicting an astonishing 2,700 deaths among inmates from Covid-19 if no action was taken to curtail the spread of the virus in jails.
GOT a story? RING The Sun on 0207 782 4104 or WHATSAPP on 07423720250 or EMAIL [email protected]
Source: Read Full Article