The problems of housing elderly prisoners

Adrian Hayes is a researcher with the Offender Health Research Network at Manchester Univeristy. @Offender_Health  

Image by mrrobertwade (wadey)

Image by mrrobertwade (wadey)

Whether old Victorian gaols or newly-built units, prisons are designed for young adults – both in terms of the regime and the physical environment itself. However, the over-60s are now the fastest-growing group amongst prisoners in England and Wales. We know from previous research that this group has a complex set of physical and mental health needs, and that these are often unmet. Our research looked at the social and custodial issues faced by older adults in prison.

We interviewed 262 prisoners aged 50 and above across North West England. Compared with the general prison population the older group appeared to represent less of a discipline problem, with fewer adjudications, a lower security rating, and less time spent in segregation. Continue reading