Soft porn for jails seen as ‘soft touch approach’

12/01/2010 18:36

From The Christian Institute

Scottish Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill has come under fire for plans to install digital TVs in Scotland’s prison cells – giving inmates access to soft porn channels.

Opposition MSPs have reacted furiously at proposals for prisoners to have access to over 100 digital channels in their cells, saying it will outrage ordinary members of the public.

The first sets are due to be delivered as early as March 2011 in a move that has been described by one critic as “soft touch Scotland personified.”

Flat screen TVs

The Scottish Prison Service (SPS) recently announced plans to install 1,600 flat screen TVs with built-in DVD players for their 8,000 current inmates.

And while the initial tender stated that there were to be no digital tuners included, European regulations specify that all sets must now have them.

“There is a standard that says if you are producing TV sets for Europe they need digital tuners because analogue is disappearing”, said an SPS spokesman.

But he confirmed that it was also cheaper to buy these standard sets, rather than specially adapted ones.

Outrage

Prisoners will be able to watch channels 24 hours a day, he added, provided they do not cause a nuisance to others.

The move has been slammed by Labour’s justice spokesman, Richard Baker, who said, “Prison is not supposed to be a home away from home.” He added that it would be “outrageous” if prisoners were to have access to soft porn.

SPS originally aimed to purchase 1,000 traditional 14-inch TVs, but this was later changed to 1,600 flat screen 19-inch models. Built-in DVD players were subsequently added to the specification.

Molly-coddled

Glasgow MSP Bill Aitken commented, “I intend to pursue the matter with the Justice Secretary”, adding “Our molly-coddled, undeserving prisoners seem to have every convenience”.

A Scottish Government spokesman responded to the criticism by saying, “the Justice Secretary will ask SPS to provide a full report about the tender.”

 

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