AN INSPECTION of Worthing’s custody suite has returned positive results, but has also highlighted areas for improvement.
The HM Inspectorate of Prisons visited the suite, as well as those in Brighton, Eastbourne, Crawley, Hastings and Chichester, during February and found staff, including those contracted from private company Reliance, to be well trained and motivated.
Their report concluded there was good strategic leadership and long-term investment from Sussex Police for its custody suites and solid support from the Sussex Police Authority.
However, inspectors found some cells contained ligature points, and police custody was being used too often “as a place of safety” for those detained under the Mental Health Act.
Assistant Chief Constable Nick Wilkinson, the chief officer responsible for custody, said: “I am pleased to receive the inspection report on our custody suites.
“It is pleasing to see the inspectors found police custody provision in Sussex was good and, overall, there are some areas of excellent practice.
“However, we are working to address the recommendations within the report to ensure we continue to provide a quality service.”