Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Annabel Goldie calls for drug testing of all Scots prisoners, ‘take the train’ Annabel, the record has been played to death on tough on crime!

Dear All

The Scottish Tories lead by Annabel Goldie are back on ‘tough on crime’ again.

It’s getting old Annabel, really old.

On of the tricks in politics is to ask loaded questions so that you can be supplied the answer you want then go out as shout the odds from the rooftops.

An overwhelming number of Scots support mandatory drug testing in prisons.

A poll carried out by YouGov on behalf of the Scottish Tories showed 91% in favour of the measure.

Boosted by the poll Scottish Tory leader Annabel Goldie gets on her high horse and demands action.

The end game is that this supports her calls for the Government to introduce tougher measures.

I suspect that given the issue that a rolling review of procedures would be in place.

Goldie said:

“When you consider that there is a drug bust in a Scottish jail every five hours, and that the Scottish Prison Service does not keep records of the type of drug found, something clearly has to be done”.

Like sticking your finger in the dyke as the water pours through in several places?

Goldie added:

“Put simply, all prisoners should be subjected to a drugs test upon their arrival in jail. This testing must be comprehensive, robust and consistent.”

Are we to believe that people who have no future would care that there is drugs testing?

And to want end, take them to court and jack up their sentence?

Annabel Goldie is a nice old dear whose is desperate to try and cling on to her position so she is like a record, only so many songs repeated.

She is a vinyl record in an MP4 age, she needs to upgrade her thinking, better still get someone in to think for her.

This quote shows how out of touch with ordinary people she is:

“We must work harder to help addicts recover and send them on the path to abstinence”.

The only part missing from her quote is ‘Ahem’!

Annabel Goldie is Scottish Tory leader, she has had a career, a good job, several advantages which other people cannot even dream of, but despite this she cannot relate to people.

Ms Goldie says of current Government policy that it should be directed at helping prisoners get off drugs.

Perhaps people don’t want to deal with reality, if Annabel Goldie was taken out of her cushy existence and lived as a member of what is termed ‘the underclass’, she would have her eyes opened.

Former Tory MP and journalist Matthew Parris tried to ‘do poor’ in the eighties as an experiment.

It was a shock to his system.

Practicalities are another thing divorced from Goldie’s thinking when she says:

“We must work harder to help addicts recover and send them on the path to abstinence. That is why we must have drug-free wings in every institution where prisoners who want to come off drugs can be removed from the availability and the temptation of drugs.”

Unworkable and resource barred.

I had to laugh when she said robust action must also be taken against anyone supplying drugs to prisoners.

Like prison?

She said:

“Visiting privileges should be withdrawn and in persistent cases criminal charges brought. We would also consider prison visits taking place behind glass screens to ensure that there is no contact between prisoners and their visitors and therefore deny them the opportunity of passing over drugs.”

I would be wary of politicians straying into operational policy matters of the SPS as a matter of course.

It may look fine on paper but how would that work in an open prison?

I suspect that Annabel Goldie isn’t trying to take us in a new direction but is purely politicking on three fronts, trying to boost the vote for Holyrood 2011, trying to gear up her own crowd and finally trying to shore up her weak position.

Goldie said the benefits of finding the political will to tackle the problem would be lower re-offending, less crime and a safer prison environment.

Speculative opinion on her part it seems.

The Scottish Prison Service (SPS) spokesman say that more than 70% of their ‘customers’ come through the door with an addiction problem.

As recovery takes a long time, it is a bit like a Super tanker, it can’t stop on a dime, just like education it takes time to sink in.

SPS said:

“The SPS has invested extensively in anti-drug measure including dogs, new technology and enhanced intelligence co-operation with the police and other agencies. Anyone found trafficking or attempting to traffic drugs into our jails is reported to police.”

I am sure Annabel Goldie knew that, so shouting the odds was nothing more than running her mouth.

It wasn’t clever and it wasn’t going anyway.

One thing for certain, when her colleagues in the Tory Party come calling for her head post 2011, the only way she will be ‘getting stoned’ is by the verbal rocks the anti Goldie faction will be throwing.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

1 comment:

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