The Worcester Diocesan Criminal Justice Affairs Group (CJAG) has been charting and discussing the impact of Covid-19 on the criminal justice system, this being their priority for this year, and the group is very concerned about how it is affecting people in prison, and their human rights. Being locked up for 23 hours a day in a prison cell, and denied family visits, education or accredited programmes, for example, are impacting on prisoners’ mental health along with a backlog of over half a million court cases.

October 11th was Prisons Sunday, the start of the annual national Prisons week, and the group received support from the Cathedral in contributing to their morning Service. The group’s Chair, Rev Charmian Manship, preached the sermon which reflected the group's concerns and views. Some of the prayers were also written by prisoners.

Catherine Kevis, YSS CEO, said: “YSS has been associated with the Diocese since our early days. We support the efforts of the Criminal Justice Affairs Group (CJAG) in upholding the human rights of prisoners and to highlight the issues of incarceration and rehabilitation and effects on families and communities."

The sermon can be downloaded here: Prisons Sunday Sermon.docx

The full service at Worcester Cathedral can be viewed here:

Catherine has written a blog on the subject of prisons, and their impact on prisoners and their families: