'Who was to blame, whose fault was it?'
Brilliant brilliant article Jack. As the another reader has said, it's the detail that makes it stand out as a rare and valuable piece of journalism.
In terms of the question of what can be done, I think your act of bearing witness at the inquest is just as much "doing something" as any law being passed or prison riot taking place, and probably a good deal more effective.
I wrote a similar piece in my newsletter in August - "The Story of Baby Number Seven", about people on the margins of society, our collective responsibility for these issues and what Dostoevsky has to teach us about this. I'd be really interested to get your views on the piece. Your colleague Jack commented favourably on it and Mollie very kindly linked to it in the Post.
It can be found at:
Thanks Jack. That’s why I like the Mill. You do proper local reporting. Keep going.
So important that these stories are reported and read. You are right. Society really isn’t interested. The problem is that there are no votes in improving prisons, so attention is unfocused
My instinctive response to the article is how shocking this was. Call me naïve but the failure of several professionals to implement the code blue should mean they were removed from their post. Prisoners are people and they are incarcerated but should still surely expect to be treated properly in an emergency?
“Andy,” he said. He thought he was called Andy; he had always called him that. In the six days they shared a cell, Johnstone never corrected him.”
The saddest detail in Jack Dulhanty’s typically detailed piece reporting the inquest into the death of Paul Anthony Johnstone in HMP Manchester.
“The British prison system is in a very bad place and has been for a very long time. It’s one of the most striking and shameful things about Britain.” Rory Stewart, during his time as Minister of State for Prisons. Okay, words come easy to fluent politicians: as easy, perhaps, as the politicians themselves come & go. Alas, prison reform will never be a vote winner, & it is down to the prisoners themselves to make a noise. Hence, the Strangeways Prison Protest of 1991. There will be others.