Illegal substances creating 'violent and volatile' prisons

A "violent and volatile prison population" is being fuelled by better access to so-called legal highs, a union has said. Ambulance callouts to Welsh prisoners who used psychoactive substances have doubled in four years. The Prison Officers' Association's Glyn Travis said drugs and staff shortages were creating "turmoil". The Ministry of Justice said it was committed to making prisons "places of safety and reform". Figures were obtained from Cardiff, Swansea, Parc in Bridgend and Usk prisons by BBC Radio Cymru's Post Cyntaf programme. They showed psychoactive substance-related ambulance callouts doubled from 202 in 2012-13 to 406 in 2015-16.Between 1 April - 31 December last year, there were 281 callouts.