25/01/2017 Midlands Today


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The prison officers leaving or going off sick


because of increasing levels of violence at Birmingham jail.


An inquest hears how a woman from Tamworth was celebrating buying


a house with her partner when she was killed


Violence that in that prison every day frighten the hell out of me.


As the number of rough sleepers continue to rise -


help for the homeless from former Stoke City manager Lou Macari.


In search of Sikhs to share their stories of migration


And after two nights of dense freezing fog, the veil has been


lifted but it's came to be frosty and very cold by tomorrow.


There are claims that large numbers of officers at Birmingham Prison


have been leaving their jobs or going sick because of increasing


Last month inmates rioted - gaining control over four wings,


staring fires and causing damage estimated at more than ?2 million.


Two separate investigations continue into what happened.


In a moment I'll be speaking to the head of the prison, but first


here's our Special Correspondent, Peter Wilson.


Birmingham prison is one of the oldest in the country.


Last month saw the worst riots and disturbances


Prison Officers sprayed with fire hoses, missiles and paint.


The former chairman of the prison officers association at the jail


claims the riot was a timebomb waiting to go off.


The levels of violence that happen in that prison, everyday, frighten


the hell out of me. I have seen staff badly assaulted, I've seen


staff assaulted to the point they no longer wish to come back to work and


had in fact walked away from the job. That horror blockbuster and


He'd worked at Birmingham prison for 30 years and claims cuts


in prison staff numbers was a factor in last month's riot.


Because of the lack of opportunity to go to the gym, because of staff


shortages, absences, illnesses, facilities were put on the wings,


weightlifting facilities, during the riot, those weightlifting


facilities, tremendously strong metal bars, were used to smash down


doors, smashed chains. 20 years ago I made a documentary


about the Victorian The governors making cuts of ?2


million. The staff say it can't be done without losing control.


In 1997 inmates used bed sheets and toilet


paper to pass secret messages and drug deals.


He must wait for the cleaner to come back. Soon as he does that, I would


drop you the OK. Today it's mobile


phones and even drones. Lloyd Robinson mentors young


men inside the jail. He claims drug gangs


are exerting their control. They have got a network outside the


prison, they can also influence prisoners inside, so they're quite


powerful people. If they are doing lengthy sentences and don't see


themselves having any hope, what they will do, that becomes their


life and therefore they will organise where are.


So what is the atmosphere like this week inside the jail ?


Things are pretty much back to normal, everything I would expect to


see is happening today, good work being done by officers, people are


settled. The biggest issue remains that drug is coming, that prisoners


on occasion can be volatile within prison, and that's part of parcel of


prison life and what officers and staff have to deal with. Why are you


speaking out? Some might accuse you of being a bitter ex-union official?


Because of my concerns for my many friends. They can't speak at the


they can't speak out to anybody for the of reprisals, the company will


dismiss them. From raising these issues that I have raised with you.


An official report into the riot at Birmingham Prison is expected


to be delivered to the government next week.


To answer some of those points I'm joined by the Director


of Birmingham prison, Peter Small.


Let's address that last point from Brian Clarke,


prison officers are afraid to speak out because they're worried


I don't except that. We have never disciplined anyone for raising


concern or speaking out. I have been a prison officer and I know that


prison officers are not afraid to tell you when there are issues. If


there is an issue, and somebody doesn't feel able to speak, we


become potential line and we also have the Ministry of Justice on site


and the Independent monitoring board which you have seen on your clip.


What about some of the other claims, What about some of the other claims,


how many officers did go off sick or left their jobs altogether after


those riots last month? Post-16th of December there was a rise in


sickness, and it is coming back down to the levels before that, in terms


of staff leaving, we have had some staff who have left the business,


not just... It varies month-to-month. What is important to


two thirds of our staffing group are two thirds of our staffing group are


still the same staff that were there in 2011. This figure of 60 having


left or gone off sick, is it something you recognise? Certainly


not 60 people left, not at all. How many? Since the riots in the last


month or so? In December and that maybe half a dozen people who have


left but that's not all connected the problems... With the event of


this extent of December. About the issue of drugs, which aims to be a


doing to get a handle on that had doing to get a handle on that had


they come into prisons in the first place? That's not just a problem in


Birmingham, it's across the service and we are constantly combating new


technology and techniques to bring less items in, such as drones, which


is a major threat to prison security at the moment in terms of the way in


which illicit items come in. We have other ways prisoners come in off the


street with drugs on their person, coming in through the visit were


being thrown over the wall. Thank you for your time.


The son of a woman from Tamworth, who was killed in a terror attack


in Tunisia, has told an inquest "knowing she was with someone


who made her happy" gave the family "comfort".


Suzanne Davey, from Tamworth, and her partner Scott Chalkley


were among 38 people killed in a grenade and gunfire


attack on the beach resort of Sousse in June 2015.


Our reporter Kathryn Stanczyszyn has been at the High Court


More harrowing evidence from these very significant inquests into the


biggest terror attack on British citizens since 7-7. Today's


proceedings started with a chilling video graphics, showing exactly the


position of each victim on that beach in Sousse when they died, many


of them still on sunbeds. Suzanne baby was on holiday with her


partner, Scott Chalkley, they had watched the holiday to celebrate


their first house together. We also heard from postmortem evidence that


Suzanne was shot in the chest and Suzanne was shot in the chest and


neck and that she would have lost consciousness almost immediately.


The families were in court, what was their reaction? There were many


dignified tears in court today, Suzanne's Sun Connor read out a


statement on behalf of the family, he talked about the things his mum


would miss, weddings, graduations, but he did say the families were


grateful to have the facts of their loved ones's last moments heard and


recorded. When it does reopen and recorded. When it does reopen and


it's almost a surreal moment when you're sitting in the court room


nice that it can be put to bed, is nice that it can be put to bed, is


it important to us? Of course it is. Is it deeply all and end all,


she will live on for ever. I've is she will live on for ever. I've is


likely to continue to sometime? It's a long and complexity process, 30


victims evidence to hear, this is day seven, likely to last for six


weeks. Tomorrow we hear evidence from Birmingham city footballer


Dennis exploits and his wife Elaine. Two people have been jailed


for life, for the murder of their flatmate in a knife attack


in Stratford Upon Avon. Kayleigh Louise Woods


and Jack Williams tied up and killed 20 year old Bethany Hill


in February last year. The prosecution described it


as "a sadistic killing, Both will serve at least


26 years behind bars. A 25-year-old man has been arrested


on suspicion of murder, after a fatal stabbing


on a Birmingham bus. Leon Barrett-Hazle was travelling


on the top deck of the Number 11A in Handsworth on Monday evening,


when he was attacked. The arrested man surrendered himself


earlier this afternoon. West Midlands Ambulance Service has


become the first NHS Foundation Trust to be rated


outstanding by the Care Inspectors rated it the best


across all ten ambulance trusts in England, it's continually met


the required response It serves 26 NHS Trusts and responds


to around 3,000 999 calls a day. In the last 18 months 850 assaults


were reported on police officers across Worcestershire,


Herefordshire and Shropshire. Now a new initiative has been


launched to try and reduce The area's Police and Crime


Commissioner says the new scheme - called "Behind the Badge" -


is aimed at changing For many officers, dealing


with the threat of violence And attacks don't just happen


in our inner cities - PC Sherry Clifford was just 5 weeks


out of training when she was kicked in the face


outside a club in Evesham. The pain that excruciating, it


knocked me back and knocked me out for a few seconds and then it was


more, have to get back up because he is still fighting. After long kick


through the face, I lost a tooth and a large factor down the side, had a


massively swollen face for about three or four weeks.


The new campaign aims to highlight the impact of violence


People forget, I'm going home to my family, my partner, don't want to go


home black and blue, people have stopped seeing us, they just see the


uniform. We are a large rural force, we have police officers out there,


away, I want to make sure the away, I want to make sure the


community plays their part. In 2016 the force introduced body


cameras which have been shown to reduce attacks in other parts


of the country. And from day one


officers receive this National figures show there's


an attack on a police officer every 22 minutes


and in the West Mercia Force area there were 850 assaults


over an 18 month period. But however well trained,


not everyone trusts the police Officers have suffered a variety of


broken bones, can be extremely broken bones, can be extremely


traumatic and officers then have to live with the injuries they may have


suffered during a shift. The hope is the number of those


injuries can be reduced. Thanks for joining us


on Midlands Today, Shefali will bring us the detailed forecast,


are we in for more fog? Not from actually but they will be a


frost. Once again our weather watchers didn't disappoint, emerging


in the bright sunlight produced some wonderful snaps today, a time to


reflect on the week so far. Colder conditions on the way.


Last year the former Stoke City manager Lou Macari helped set up


Initially open for a two-month trial, thanks to his campaigning


and setting up his own foundation, it's still in operation.


And as new figures today show, the need is increasing -


with the number of rough sleepers across the region on the rise.


It's for being our best guest of the month. I couldn't see any way of


helping them unless you get a bit close to them, if they have a bit of


confidence in you, then gradually they start to tell you all about


themselves. Without knowing about them, you can't help them.


Congratulations! You have a bit of banter, then I go home, walked out


the door, I go to a nice warm home, I've got a job that week, money in


they haven't, know. It's somewhere they haven't, know. It's somewhere


you can get a hot meal, somewhere you can get a hot meal,


you can have a shower. And it's you can have a shower. And it's


can speak to the staff here. It can speak to the staff here. It


makes a massive difference. Do you think I'm crazy making him a


second-in-command? Eudora? -- you can? He knows everything that's


going on in here. His kind-hearted doing this, putting his heart into


this. It's nice to come here and call it home. Late at night, seven


o'clock you can call it home. Word is getting around, and ten years


from now let's say,... It's that one-way system in step! The ring


road! YouTube going round and round it and eventually you will get here!


A lot of people who stay in here, they have been round the system for


ages, not the same system you have talked about, being round and round,


eventually you have got to try and eventually you have got to try and


get them into another system which is the normal way of life. Help them


try and achieve that, that would be brilliant.


Joan Cummins is in Birmingham for us tonight, one of the areas


with the largest number of homeless people.


Joan, what's the picture like across the Midlands?


You have already mentioned the official government figures which


say more than 4000 in the country, here in Birmingham the figures


captured on that snapshot were 55. The ambassador for the homeless


situation here in Birmingham is this counsellor. What can you did try and


help these people? In Birmingham were trying to do a lot, we have to


be clear about this, this is a national issue, but we are working


together with a lot of different groups in the city and we are


listening to rough sleepers, I think that's absolutely key to get things


done. 55 sounds really low in a city the size of Birmingham, a lot of


people say, I bet it's higher. It's just a snapshot that took place in


November when we all went out on a particular day set by the


government, we did anticipate that would rise over the festive season


and we do think that happened but alongside this we are planning to go


out in the spring to see if trends change, we want to keep an eye on


the numbers to respond to them. 55 the numbers to respond to them. 55


is not many inner-city the size of Nottingham, on their 55 pit your can


give them? There are barriers to some people, the going back doors,


so to speak, so we're trying to address those and reduce them,


helping couples to get into a hostel together, some rough sleepers of got


dogs, there wasn't provision for those and now we have a hostel who


are trialling it so they can get the are trialling it so they can get the


dogs in so they can reduce those numbers. It's a situation that is


going on, the council so they are investing more in dealing with this


issue, and they are going to carry on doing their own monitoring of the


situation. Being a bodyguard is a job which can


pay up to ?1000 a day - You need to be prepared to put


yourself in harm's way. But if that doesn't put you off,


City College in Coventry can offer They visits by Princess Diana and


the Queen Mother commanded police presence, and one of those offices


is passing on his 30 years of experience to the next generation of


would-be bodyguards. It started with the Birmingham pub bombings were a


lot of us were taken into protection work and it went on to there. The


Midland is a vibrant area with Birmingham and Coventry and the rest


coming here who need the protection coming here who need the protection


we can provide. Keeping their eyes peeled the danger and threats,


students are coming to pay ?1100 to pass the accredited 14 day course.


But all training needs that willing guinea pigs. So time for my


superstar transformation. The scene is set. I am popular...


And I have a stalker, who is obsessed with getting a bit too


close. I said it would be here to see you! This may be playacting but


you do need a license legally to do you do need a license legally to do


protection work. That was a close shave, but what attracts people to


put themselves on the line of fire? I always wanted to get into


security, come from an army background, I got into the gym and


thought I needed to do something with what I achieved. You are


protecting the likes of me! It's all protecting the likes of me! It's all


down to define it, doesn't matter what size or shape, as long as your


bit, you can take on the training. I may be safe and sound but for the


real VIPs, Coventry has got their back.


It's been a busy day in the transfer market for Aston Villa,


who've signed the Barnsley defender James Bree and the Icelandic


And there's been a rare win for Coventry City.


The Sky Blues are just 90 minutes away from Wembley -


after beating Swansea's under 21 side in the quarter-final


Reice Charles-Cook was their star man, saving two


The Birmingham boxer Kal Yafai is to make the first defence


of his world title in his home city later this year.


Yafai won the WBA Super Middleweight belt in Manchester last month.


It made him Birmingham's first ever boxing world champion.


He will defend the title at the Barclaycard Arena


Sikhs across Birmingham and the Black Country


are being asked to come forward to share stories of migration


from the first generation right through to the present day.


The project, being led by the Nishkam Civic Association


is looking to create a colelctive picture of what happened


Our Arts Reporter Satnam Rana takes a look at how her grandfather's


story is one of the many that have been locked away for decades.


The faces of immigration and Wolverhampton in 1968, documented in


a TV programme. It was my maternal grandfather,


Prakash Singh Tahim who made a journey from North India


in Punjab to the UK in 1963. And finally to a place I call home,


Wolverhampton. But finding work wasn't that easy. I lost my


grandfather a few weeks ago. TRANSLATION: He couldn't find work,


the city looked to hold, then his cousin said you may have two tick


off your turban and shave your bit. Once you did the same factories who


went turned away the key man. But 1966 first of his family had joined


him in they are many years later. My grandfather always


wanted his chldren to build a better life through education -


something he was denied in India and this was his main


reason for migrating. Everyone used to say, why are you


educating your children, especially your daughters? Answered, if you can


send my to London to study, why can't you send bitterness and


college in Birmingham. He agreed. The youngest went to university to.


It is stories like ours that the Nishkam Civic Association


in Birmingham is looking to document.


The Heritage Lottery funded project is seeking out men and women


who have made journies here from the '50s


That generation is getting older and as they are passing, they're taking


their stories with them so unless their stories with them so unless


they have told you something personally, you won't know who these


people were and what they contributed to the region.


When my grandfather retired he returned to being


Along the way he helped set up a gurdwara too.


And he's left behind a legacy spanning generations,


We have at the forecast is the last few days. Fog and frost. I nearly


got it wrong! More on the way. Yes, we were shrouded in that frog


dismally, dense, freezing fog, it was mostly across the South-East of


the region, either in the west it was a much better picture. Here we


had the best of the sunshine once the fog lifted. For once, that's not


going to be obscured by fog tonight, there was cloud on the way, it has


been nibbling away at the sunshine to the west throughout the day and


now it is right across us. This will draw in cold air and the wins will


turn to southerly, south-westerly is by Friday and that will come with a


caveat, we have rain heading in from the west. Sunday is going to be the


best day of the weekend. Looking at this evening, that cloud still


starting to stretch across to the West, continuing its journey that


way, so by the end of the night, cloud right across us, undercutting


that we have the colder air being drawn in by the Southeast police.


You can see the odd grain of snow, largely dry picture and with that


cold air, temperatures will to form the below freezing. A fairly


widespread frost as we head into the morning tomorrow. So a frosty cloudy


start to Thursday, however it's going to be mainly dry, we will


continue to see the snowflakes falling, but mainly dry picture. We


might see a bit of brightness breaking through as the crowd thins


out in places but you can see, it's good to be bitterly cold. With the


wind chill, it can to feel even wind chill, it can to feel even


colder than that. Into tomorrow night, we start to see those guys


not clearing but the cloud thickening up again -- those skies.


You can see Frost start to develop once again and perhaps even the


likelihood of a bit of snow as we head into Friday.


I am back with you at half-past ten to


RADIO: 'The UK has voted to leave the European Union by 52% to 48.


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