Stephen Williams MP - working hard for Bristol West

Early release scheme shows Labour's prison policy is a mess says Stephen Williams MP

5.25.30pm BST (GMT +0100) Thu 13th Oct 2005

Stephen Williams MP has slammed Labour's prison policy after it was revealed that the service is less than 1,000 spaces away from being full. Horfield Prison in his Bristol West constituency reportedly has only two places left.

Thousands of prisoners will be released early in an attempt to ease prison overcrowding, under plans approved by Charles Clarke. Half the 70,000 prisoners sentenced each year to less than four years in jail for offences such as burglary, fraud and theft are estimated to be eligible for early release, under a curfew and electronic tag.

Stephen Williams said "After 8 years in Government Labour's prison policy is in tatters. It began with tough sounding measures and locking more people up, but now the prisons are full they are going to release people early. The length of sentences should be set to punish and rehabilitate not as a panic measure when prisons become overcrowded."

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Previous news story: Stephen Williams MP calls for a tailored approach for people on incapacity benefit (Thu 13th Oct 2005).
Next news story: Cost of ID Cards will hit the poorest the hardest says Stephen Williams MP (Sun 16th Oct 2005).

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