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Prisons: Private Sector

Volume 694: debated on Wednesday 18 July 2007

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What requirements they put in the contracts of privately managed prisons in England and Wales to meet the requirements under race equality legislation. [HL4707]

The contracts require adherence to all statutory legislation which includes the requirement to comply with race equality legislation. This applies to both agents and subcontractors of the providers.

Providers, therefore, are required to ensure they comply with all statutory legislation in place at the time of contract award and any applicable legislative changes, including those relating to race equality and diversity that are subsequently enacted.

HM Prison Service introduced its protocol (PSO 2800) for managing race equality in September 2006. This order was written by the public sector service for the public sector and there was no expectation on its part that this would apply to the contracted sector.

In January 2007, the NOMS wrote to operational directors of the contractor companies to state that the mandatory instructions set out in the revised PSO 2800 would also apply to contracted prisons.