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PRISON officers have criticised prisons boss Michael Spurr for accepting “blood money” in the form of a bonus.
Delegates attending the Prison Officers’ Association (POA) conference lined up to attack HM Prison and Probation Service chief executive Mr Spurr for taking a £20,000 payment, on top of his annual salary of £145-150,000, for last year’s financial period.
They have formally instructed their union leadership to let him know what prison officers think of him.
Mr Spurr faced heavy criticism from prison staff for overseeing the government’s £900 million cuts package in prisons — a move which many staff claim has left prisons riddled with drugs, understaffed, and flooded with inexperienced workers.
A delegate representing Hindley Prison staff criticised Mr Spurr for letting prison staff across Britain face “untold misery” and considered the bonus to be “laughing at us.”
“I looked at my wage packet from ten years ago the other day — £28,126 annually. My wage has now risen by £1,483.
“This is an absolute disgrace — ten years work on a 7p pay rise.
“This is nothing more than blood money for the disgraceful and shameful way you’ve [Mr Spurr] allowed prison services to fail.”
Another delegate talked about the rising incidents of self-harm, violent attacks and drug abuse in jails, and said that Mr Spurr “didn’t do anything” about it.
“He didn’t stand up to politicians or say anything in the press. He locked his office door and did nothing.”
The government justified Mr Spurr’s bonus for having “achieved at least one objective” — the successful implementation of government cuts on the prison service.
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