Frequently Asked Questions

Question

I work in the Substance Abuse area and am fearful of being transferred to a private company. Can I apply for different jobs within the prisons?

Answer

If the transfer is proposed you will have the protection of the Tupe regulations and your Branch Secretary will liaise with you and the prospective company on this. Unfortunately NOMS management have an appalling approach to Tupe and are dismissive of any notion that staff deserves to be treated fairly. Meetings and letters with management on this are ongoing.

To reply to your question, in a letter dated 23 March 2012 management reaffirmed; “ ... who currently work on substance misuse services would be allowed to apply for other roles, rather than be subject automatically to TUPE transfer. I can confirm that employees can continue to apply for roles in open and fair competition that arise pending an appropriate date ahead of the formal transfer. It will be for Governors to determine locally whether any appropriate deadline for transfers to be confirmed by, and communicate this as a “measure” to union colleagues.” 
 


Question

What profits can a private company make from a prison contract?

Answer

Companies aim for a 7% profit. The Birmingham contract is worth £468,300,000 and hence the profit would be £32,781,000.


Question

What is the cost of contract management of these private prisons?

Answer

The cost is around 10% of the contract. The Birmingham contract is worth £468,300,000 and hence the contract management is budgeted to be £4,683,000.
Note that as well as contract management, the MoJ employ 289 staff in their procurement section.
 


Question

We have numerous examples of outsourcing/privatisation. Is there evidence that this is not value for money?

Answer

The Prison Service outsourced its IT. The provider charge £237 per month (2012 figure) for use of a lap top. The work is to be retendered and there will not be a public sector bid.


Question

How much does the Department spend on Consultants?

Answer

The data available is certain to be an underestimate. The MoJ spend £1,888,433 in the month of May 2010! For eleven months in 2011 the (under estimated) money paid to Consultants was £23,713,023.


Question

Is it true that the In House Bid has notional costs added to it?

Answer

Yes this is absolutely true. For Birmingham the add on were officially 11.5%, but matter of fact was considerably higher. These additional costs added to the In House Bid are highly questionable and for example 6.5% added on to cover HQ costs, albeit NOMS HQ is declining and also in fact services the private prison in many respects. Without these notional add on to the In House Bid the Birmingham public sector bid would have been successful.

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