Since January, the company has been working to address the issues identified at the centre for young people sentenced or remanded to custody and reviewed every aspect of recruitment, training, reporting and governance processes. This has included an acceleration of the planned roll-out of body-worn video cameras, the retraining of all staff by a national team on minimising and managing physical restraint and continued support for the work of the Ministry of Justice’s Independent Improvement Board.
A range of agencies has visited and inspected Medway, including an Ofsted team and the Children’s Commissioner, and YJB monitors and children’s charity Barnardo’s have also increased their monitoring and advocacy services.
Responding to today's announcement, Regional President for G4S in the UK and Ireland, Peter Neden, said:
“We have agreed with the Ministry of Justice that the transfer to the new contract at Medway Secure Training Centre, scheduled to take effect today, will be postponed while the work of the Ministry’s Improvement Board is completed. The existing agreement will be extended in its current form for a period of up to four months.
“Since the issues were identified at Medway earlier this year, we have been working hard to review every aspect of our recruitment, training, reporting and governance processes and it is encouraging that the Youth Justice Board (YJB) have started to place young people at the centre once again.
“While we recently announced our intention to exit children’s services, including at Medway, we remain committed to the welfare of young people at the centre and responding to the serious issues raised at the beginning of the year.”
Notes to editors:
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The Ministry of Justice's announcement can be found on the gov.uk website