Warning issued on ‘play fighting’ involving staff and inmates at secure training centre
Play fighting involving staff as well as inmates is “widespread” at a youth jail, an inspection found.
The issue was referenced in a report on Rainsbrook secure training centre near Rugby in Warwickshire.
It said: “Unacceptable levels of ‘play fighting’, by both young people and staff, remain widespread across the centre.
“Attempts by senior managers to instil a ‘zero-tolerance’ approach to challenging this behaviour have been ineffectual.
“Staff and young people do not always see the close link between this behaviour and the possible escalation towards actual bullying or intimidation.”
Rainsbrook, one of three secure training centres in England and Wales, is designed to accommodate youngsters aged between 12 and 18.
It held 65 individuals at the time of the inspection in October.
The inspection report, published by Ofsted, said the level of violence at the centre “continues to be high”, with 587 incidents in the previous six months.
Most were of a relatively low level of seriousness but 12 young people and 11 members of staff sustained injuries requiring medical treatment.
Overall, inspectors found there had been “sustained improvements” in the care provided at the facility.
MTCnovo, which manages the centre, said: “We are pleased the inspectors acknowledge that improved judgments in four areas reflect steady and determined efforts by the director over the last year, achieving sustained improvements in the care of young people provided in the centre.
“Reducing levels of violence and the use of force taking place within the STC is a high priority for us.
“Our behaviour management strategy introduced in July 2017 has had impact within the centre and has led to a reduction in levels of serious violence.”
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