Anti-gay attitudes are rife in correction centres across Great
Britain, a new study has claimed today.
The report, by the Howard League for Penal Reform, claims
numerous incidents of verbal, physical and sexual assault have been
reported - but that most are ignored by authorities.
According to The Independent, the study "shines a light on the
last taboo in Britain's prison system".
The research comes as the prison service makes a public effort
to minimise hate crimes to before equality laws that come into
force next Spring.
According to the results they gathered, targeting gay prisoners
for sexual favours is widespread, while sending prisoners to
segregation units "fuelled dangerous, false stereotypes about
Suffolk's Warren Hill young offenders' institute, Wayland prison
in Norfolk and Askham Grange women's prison in Yorkshire are among
those that must urgently improve support for gay inmates, according
to Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Prisons, The Independent
One bisexual man told the League: "I've been put in segregation
and slashed down my back with a razor. They say if I go into the
shower they will beat me up and some ask for sexual favours. We
can't report it, as we're then labelled as a grass and that leads
Frances Crook, chief executive of the Howard League, said:
"Anecdotally, we know there is endemic homophobia directed at gay
prisoners from staff and other inmates," she said.
"We have been told that the weak and vulnerable are targeted for
the purchase of sexual favours or [their] exchange for canteen
items, drugs or protection. The charity has been told that gay
prisoners are advised by officers to 'act less gay' as a survival