Pentonville Prison imposes smoking ban on inmates

Pentonville is an all-male prison which holds over 1000 inmates

Pentonville Prison has banned prisoners from smoking as part of a rollout of a smoke-free prison policy in England and Wales.

Pentonville tweeted on Sunday: “Another historic milestone as Pentonville goes non-smoking from today. Months of planning have led up to this date and we have a range of NRT options.

The Ministry of Justice first announced the ban in 2015 and ran a pilot scheme in 21 Welsh prisons.

An estimated 80 per cent of prisoners in the UK smoke, and criminal justice experts have warned of a backlash against the move if prisoners feel one of their few privileges is being taken away.

An independent report found a sharp increase in incidents of vandalism and violence after the ban was introduced at HMP Cardiff, attributed partly to the stress of withdrawal.

Action on Smoking and Health (ASH), said: “ASH welcomes the news that Pentonville Prison has gone smoke-free as part of the national roll-out of smokefree policies all in prisons across England and Wales.

“Prison authorities have a duty of care to protect the health of both staff and inmates, and smokefree policies will substantially improve their health and wellbeing.

“Prisoners are being given support to help them quit and those that want to continue using nicotine are able to buy e-cigarettes from prison shops.”