§ 65. Mr. Galley
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what has been (a) the percentage increase in the number of prison officers and (b) the percentage increase in the average prison population since 1979; and if he will make a statement on the progress of negotiations on reforming working practices in the prison service.
§ Mr. Mellor
The number of prison officers has increased by 21.52 per cent. since 1979, whilst the average daily prison population has increased by 10.77 per cent. Discussions with the Prison Officers' Association and the other Prison Service trade unions on reforming working practices are still under way, and we very much hope that they can be brought to a speedy and agreed conclusion.