FIVE THINGS YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT WOMEN’S PRISONS
1. You can buy clothes from the Avon catalogue.
2. The Governor gets called the ‘Gold Command’ when there’s an emergency.
3. Tampons are unlimited, soap is not.
4. The best paid job a prisoner can do is sewing pillow cases for other prisons.
5. More than half the women in prison have been victims of more serious crimes than the crimes they’ve committed.
Life in UK prisons is a secret world that only leaks out of its barbed wire walls in contradictory sensationalist headlines and Panorama documentaries: disgraceful conditions versus phones and TV, drug epidemics and gangs versus self-harm and overcrowding. So what’s the truth? What do prisoners really do each day? Why are they in there while we’re not? And what happens once they leave? Helped by some women who’ve been inside, Mim Skinner—a prison teacher and community support worker—is here to set the record straight and shine a light on what it’s really like to work and live inside as a woman.
As eye-opening and funny as it is engrossing and heartbreaking, this is the first account of the unique world that exists inside a UK high-security women’s prison and the stories of the women imprisoned there.