HR boss claims prison staff have learned lessons

Lessons have been learned from the “terrible” murder of Asian teenager Zahid Mubarek, the Prison Service’s director of personnel has insisted.

Last week, an independent inquiry ruled that Mubarek’s death at Feltham Young Offenders’ Institution in 2000 was avoidable. But due to a lack of effective management and individual failings, he was placed in a cell with psychopathic racist Robert Stewart, who beat him to death with a table leg.

Speaking exclusively to Personnel Today, director of personnel at the Prison Service Gareth Hadley, said it was now a “fundamentally different” place.

“It was a terrible crime and the service has fully acknowledged that it should have been prevented. But things have moved on considerably since then,” he said.

Changes to systems, processes and training were working in practice, he said, along with a race and diversity action plan developed with the Commission for Racial Equality.

“The quality of management in the service is improving,” said Hadley. “There has been a huge effort in the past six years to improve the training and development of our managers. Clearly the service has to pursue a course of continual improvement.”

The government said it was considering the report’s recommendations both “urgently and carefully”.

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