§ Mr. Thomas Cox
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department on whose authority journalists are allowed to interview people serving prison sentences; on how many occasions such interviews have taken place during the last three years; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Carlisle
Permission is never given for journalists in a professional capacity to interview individual prisoners about their cases or personal or family circumstances, or those of other prisoners. There is no intention to make any change in the present policy.
Journalists may be given facilities to visit Prison Department establishments to prepare material about the establishment or the prison system in general. They may then, at the discretion of the governor, speak to individual prisoners about the prison regime, but the prisoner's personal affairs or those of other prisoners must not be discussed, and the prisoners must not subsequently be named.