Helping detainees in need of medical assistance

Handcuffing and Privacy

Saturday, March 12th, 2016

Her Majesty’s Inspector of Prisons has reported:

“Although we found a small number of exceptions, most detainees were handcuffed on external appointments, even though they all underwent individual risk assessments. This included some detainees assessed as low risk.

A detainee who was wheelchair bound following a stroke, had recently been handcuffed on a journey to hospital, and for no obvious reason. He had been assessed as low risk. We noted other cases where use of handcuffs was grossly excessive.

In November 2012, a dying man had remained handcuffed while sedated and undergoing an angioplasty procedure in hospital.  His restraints had only been removed seven hours before his death …

In another case, an 84-year-old man who was considered frail and was suffering from Dementia, died while still in handcuffs, having been kept in them for around five hours. Only after his heart had stopped and cardiopulmonary resuscitation started were the handcuffs removed.”

HM Chief Inspector of Prisons,

Report on an unannounced inspection of Harmondsworth Immigration Removal Centre,

5–16 August 2013.