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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-03898: Liam McArthur (Orkney Islands)

Scottish Liberal Democrats

Date lodged: 20 October 2016

To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the construction of the new central detention unit and the regional detention units for women offenders.

Answered by: Michael Matheson 15 November 2016

In June 2015, I announced my vision for a new and innovative approach for the female custodial estate in Scotland. Since then a programme of work has been established in the Scottish Prison Service in partnership with the Scottish Government to deliver this vision. The programme includes:

The design and construction of a new small national facility for women on the site of HMP and YOI Cornton Vale. This facility will be run using therapeutic community principles and will incorporate gender-specific and trauma informed practice. Construction on the new national prison is expected to begin in mid-2018 subject to financial and planning approvals and;

The design and development of up to five Community Custody Units (CCUs) located across Scotland sited to ensure that women are held in facilities as close as possible to their own communities. The CCUs will focus on rehabilitation and reintegration and will ensure women are held in conditions of appropriate security.

A range of work is already underway to further develop these models.