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The Prisons and Young Offenders Institutions (Scotland) Rules 2011

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Complaints to the Governor in relation to confidential matters

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124.—(1) This rule applies to complaints made by a prisoner to the Governor concerning any confidential matter.

(2) A complaint to which this rule applies must be—

(a)made in writing;

(b)placed in a sealed envelope; and

(c)given to the residential officer, who must convey the complaint to the Governor without delay.

(3) Where the Governor is of the opinion that a complaint made under paragraph (2) is not about a confidential matter and is therefore not a complaint to which this rule applies, the Governor must—

(a)inform the prisoner as soon as reasonably practicable that the complaint is one which should be made in accordance with rule 122; and

(b)return the written complaint to the prisoner in a sealed envelope.

(4) Subject to paragraph (5), the Governor must consider any complaint to which this rule applies and inform the prisoner in writing and in a sealed envelope of his or her decision within 7 days of the complaint being made and of the reasons for that decision.

(5) If, in exceptional circumstances, the Governor is unable to give a decision within the period specified in paragraph (4), he or she must—

(a)inform the prisoner of the reasons for the delay;

(b)advise the prisoner of the timescale within which the decision will be given; and

(c)inform the prisoner in writing and in a sealed envelope of the decision and of the reasons for the decision as soon as practicable.

(6) The Governor, upon issuing a decision to the prisoner under paragraphs (4) or (5), must inform the prisoner of the process by which the complaint may be referred to the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman.

(7) For the purposes of this rule—

(a)a “confidential matter” is any matter which, in the opinion of the Governor, is of an exceptionally sensitive or serious nature; and

(b)“residential officer” means an officer who is required by the Governor to supervise areas of living accommodation for prisoners under the management of the residential first line manager.

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