Local MP Sir Alan Beith is to meet senior executives from Sodexo to discuss serious concerns over staff reductions and other operational issues at HMP Northumberland.
The Liberal Democrat MP, who represents the Berwick constituency, said: “I have recently met a number of prison officers and former prison officers and I have serious concerns about staff reductions and other operational issues at HMP Northumberland.
“Since Sodexo took over running the prison on 1 December 2013, I have become increasingly worried about whether the safety of prison staff and prisoners can be maintained.
“Following the recent incident at the prison I have asked for an urgent meeting with Sodexo executives and I am heading to the prison this Thursday. I am also meeting representatives from the Prison Officers’ Association.”
Local campaigner Julie Pörksen has met a number of prison officers and their families recently and is calling on Sodexo to rethink their staffing levels in the interests of safety, security and rehabilitation.
“Some of the prison officers’ families have told me they are worried every time their relatives go to work. The changes at HMP Northumberland do not seem to be working and we also need to ask whether the prison is able to provide effective rehabilitation in the current circumstances.”