A number of children from ethnic minorities have accused G4S staff manning Secure Training Centres in the UK of physical abuse.
A report published by Traveller Movement, a charity, claims that nearly a third of Gypsy, Traveller and Roma children held at the three youth jails operated by private security contractor G4S have complained of physical abuse by the staff manning these jails. The report also points out that there are too many children from these three ethnic minorities in the UK’s youth justice system.
The report has prompted Labour MP Kate Green, who is also a member of the Justice Select Committee, to request the Government to find out how many children from the three ethnic minority groups are ensconced in the youth jails in the UK and to try to ascertain why so many Gypsy, Traveller and Roma children are ending up in youth jails.
The report was based on a study that was carried out between April 2015 and April 2016. Nearly 29 per cent of the 16 Gypsy, Traveller and Roma children questioned at Medway, Oakhill and Rainsbrook complained of physical abuse by the staff, compared to 9 per cent of other children.
One in ten of Gypsy, Traveller and Roma children stated that they had been sexually abused by a staff member, compared to 1 per cent of other children.
Also, 29 per cent of Gypsy, Traveller and Roma children said that they been insulted by a member of staff, compared to 11 per cent of other children.
A spokesperson for G4S stated that the organisation would carefully review the report. However, the private security contractor is no longer running two of the three centres, and it is in the process of exiting from the third youth jail.
A US security contractor has taken over at Rainsbrook, and Medway is being run by the Ministry of Justice.