Several prison officers are reported to have been injured during a serious disturbance at the Morton Hall Immigration Removal Centre on Christmas Eve. One prisoner is said to be in a serious condition in hospital with a head injury. Between 30 and 40 Prisoners are believed to have started a peaceful protest against conditions within the facility, and refused to return to their cells when instructed to.
Despite the UK border agency playing down the incident, the POA (Prison Officer Association) claim that around 50 individuals were involved in serious violence that included the use of home-made knives, pool-cues, and snooker balls. They also claim that there was a serious escape attempt thwarted on Christmas day.
It has been suggested that prior to the incident prisoners had been complaining about - a serious water supply failure, before the incident, all toilets blocked, no running water whatsoever, no cooked meals, detainees given sandwiches and cold drinks. Other reports suggest that detainees have been subjected to a long-running campaign of sleep deprivation by guards deliberately banging doors when doing night time checks
A POA spokesperson stated that:
“We feel one of our people is going to get killed as staffing levels have been reduced. We will get a member of staff killed on duty”.
When you lock people up for being immigrants what do you expect? Not that you can believe anything the disgraceful POA claim. They have a long history of engineering and exaggerating events for their own ends. Only today it was being reported that in 1982 the POA were preparing to provoke prison riots in an attempt to stop a reduction in their overtime pay.
The Prison Officers Association will never get my support on anything. To see them marching on October the 20th with trade unionists and working class militants made me sick. The treatment that these people have dished out to the likes of Des Warren and countless other class struggle prisoners is disgusting.
The following quote is from the Revolutionary Communist Group.
“When the POA general secretary Brian Caton states that ‘every officer has human rights and they include the right to withdraw their labour’ and sections of the left rush to voice their support and solidarity, we should remember that prison officers never stand in solidarity with prisoners who take protest action in support of their human rights. In 1990 when prisoners at Strangeways rose up in protest against years of oppression, brutality and degradation, the POA was first in the queue to denounce them, call them animals and tell barefaced lies about their actions, claiming protesting prisoners had committed murder and torture, in order to prevent public sympathy and destroy solidarity. Most prison officers are from the working class but, like the police, they are hired to protect the ruling class by enforcing its laws and punishing those who do not obey them. They are the defenders of inequality and privilege. They are therefore quite different from state employees who teach, nurse or provide services that benefit the working class”
Solidarity with all those imprisoned in Immigration Removal Centres. The POA can fuck off.