Public safety is one of the UK Independence Party’s utmost priorities and recently, UKIP MEP Jane Collins criticised an article co-written by Nick Clegg, which called for prisons to halve its amount of prisoners in an effort to help prisons cope.

As it stands, British prisons are in a situation where riot squads are being called in to help with prisoners as the current number of prison officers is nowhere near at a reasonable level. Officers are overworked and find it impossible to deal with their workloads. Clegg and co. believe that the solution to overworked prison staff is to reduce prisoner numbers, but Collins disagrees. She argues that the solution is to recruit more prison officers, and to find these new officers, prisons should look no further than former armed forces members who are already trained in problem solving and conflict resolution as well as being physically fit.

According to Collins, reducing the number of prisoners would only mean giving out laughable and softer sentences to criminals and undermining justice. In her scrutiny of the article, she states: “Years of privatisation, under-investment and cuts are now coming home to roost, yet the grand plan of those responsible is to cut prisoner numbers, rather than take responsibility and provide a fit-for-purpose prison system.”