The Prison Officers Association has been warning for years that our jails (although some of them are no longer “our jails,” but private businesses) were a volcano waiting to erupt. Their warnings were not only ignored, but their rights were taken away from them by the John Major Government and, despite promises to the contrary, not restored by Tony Blair or Gordon Brown. What happened next is history, already. The uprising in the G4S private prison in Birmingham last week may just be a taste of what’s to come. We invited Steve Gillan, General Secretary of the POA, to tell us just what has gone wrong in Britain’s prisons and what needs to be done.
And he was a Fine Young Cannibal indeed: the epitome of cool, voted in 1990 by People Magazine as one of the 50 most beautiful people in the world. Iconic hits like ‘She Drives Me Crazy’ and ‘Good Thing’ rocked many a casbah, and then, so far as most members of the public were concerned, he disappeared. Except of course he didn’t: like all of us he lived his life. So for a special Christmas treat we invited Roland Gift aboard Sputnik to tell us what he has been up to, and also to treat us with a special Christmas performance.