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Mentally Subnormal Persons

Volume 984: debated on Friday 9 May 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many secure accommodation units are needed to absorb the current level of mentally subnormal persons now in prison in (a) England and Wales, and (b) Greater London.

On 31 December 1979, the latest date for which figures are available, 38 prisoners in England and Wales were, in the opinion of prison medical officers, suffering from subnormality or severe subnormality of mind, which is a category within the meaning of the Mental Health Act 1959, and were in need of, and capable of benefiting from, treatment within a psychiatric hospital. Nine of these were located in prisons within Greater London.The number of these prisoners who would have required treatment in secure conditions had they been transferred to psychiatric hospitals is not known.