§ Baroness Faithfull
asked Her Majesty's Government:
What amount the Prison Service receives from the Joe Bloggs company for each shirt made for the company at Walton and Styal prisons; how much a prisoner earns for making each shirt; and what is the retail price of each shirt.
What amount the Prison Service receives from the Joe Bloggs company for each pair of jeans made for the company at Wymott prison; how much a prisoner earns for making each pair; and what is the retail price of each pair.
§ Baroness Trumpington
Responsibility for these matters has been delegated to the Director General of the Prison Service, who has been asked to arrange for a reply to be given.
Letter to Baroness Faithfull from the Director General of the Prison Service, Mr. Derk Lewis:
Lady Blatch has asked me to reply to your recent Questions about the Joe Bloggs label shirts made at Liverpool and Styal prisons, and the jeans made under the same label at Wymott prison.
Joe Bloggs is a label owned by a company called Pinwise Ltd, which also owns a number of other fashion labels. The work done at the three prisons was under contract to another company called Waltham House, which is a supplier to Pinwise Ltd, and which has been providing commercial work for prisons in the Trans Pennine and North West areas.
The White Paper, Custody Care and Justice (September 1991, CM 1647), set out the Government's intention to extend the range of work available to prisoners and to increase pay levels. This has involved an increase in the amount of commercial work taken on from the private sector. For example, about 80 per cent. of industrial work at Manchester prison is sourced from the private sector. The jeans and shirts work undertaken for Waltham House is good quality tailoring work which has been praised by the end-customer, Pinwise Ltd (Joe Bloggs). The lines produced would normally have been made abroad and imported into this country. Waltham House provided the fabric, thread and other materials, which are not therefore included in the payments received by the Prison Service.63WA
Generally, inmates work on production lines, each undertaking one or more processes going towards the production of a completed garment. Pay rates are set according to hours of attendance and work rate rather than on the basis of a payment per garment produced.
The shirt work at Styal consisted of an order for just over 4,000 over-shirts, for which the prison received £1.15 per item. Earnings in the workshop at Styal averaged £15.00 per week, which equates to approximately 90 pence per item. Pricing of the finished item is at the commercial discretion of the retailer, but we understand that the over-shirts were expected to retail at between £12.00 and £29.99.
Liverpool prison produced just over 200 over-shirts to help complete the order. The prisoners there worked on a variety of other jobs for consumption within the Prison Service while the over-shirt work was going through and it is not possible to identify separately the earnings attributable to the shirt work, although the 64WA prisoners concerned did receive a special bonus of £1 per week on top of their normal pay.
For the jeans produced at Wymott, the prison received 90 pence per garment whilst prisoner earnings ranged from £9.77 per week to £29.36. At the time the prisoners were, however, also working on other products, so it is not possible to give a precise figure for earnings for each pair of jeans. We understand that the jeans were likely to retail at between £9 and £16.99.