I read Eric Allison’s article in FRFI 215 about brutality in Frankland prison. I’ve had my own troubles down the block there… The screws are like bulls and are pumped full of steroids. It was the only prison I saw where hypodermic needles were used for anything other than narcotics, and some cons had the screws bringing them steroids and needles.
I was assaulted down the block when I went to collect my dinner and returned the rice pudding because it was solid, and they construed that as me throwing it back at them (it did fall off the table, but not intentionally). All the way back to my cell I had them pushing and shoving me down the stairs and when we got to the rest of the cells I started shouting that they could ‘assault me all you want! There are six of you and one of me, but all it will take is one go from me and one of you is going to lose an eye! How do you fancy that?’ I wanted the rest of the cons to hear what was going on in case I needed witnesses.
On another occasion I was sitting next to a black prisoner and the screws were standing outside his door making ‘monkey’ noises. It might not seem like a lot but that was in the days when we had a bit of control of the system. As soon as the IRA lads got repatriated the screws took control of the system again, so it must be horrendous now.
I heard too that a Muslim prisoner in Frankland received FRFI but with that article torn out. Reminiscent of the days when Irish POWs received copies of AP/RN with all mention of prison and the liberation struggle torn out, leaving just the Gaelic football section!