Convicts Get Methadone Vending Machines, We Pay £4million

July 17, 2009 1:30 PM

Yesterday, I learned that the government is now using taxpayers’ money to supply methadone to prisoners in the UK.  That’s £4million of our money to get prisoners high.


This has to top the list as one of the most appalling ways to waste taxpayers’ money.


It’s such a ridiculous programme I don’t know where to begin.


First of all, we’re talking about convicted criminals.  Why should taxpayers fund a criminal’s drug habit?  I’m not an expert, but I would be willing to guess that drugs contributed to the crimes that many of these people committed in the first place.  If prisons are supposed to rehabilitate inmates and reintegrate them into society, they should be striving to do just that, not substituting a heroin addiction with its legal equivalent to sedate their inmates.


And then there’s the fact that the government couldn’t even be bothered to involve a nurse in this exchange.  The drug is being doled out via vending machine - who thought this was a good idea?  I think I see a problem here; if you hand out a hard drug in a prison, what are the chances that it will end up in the right hands?  The prisoners could either develop a very profitable black market (at the taxpayers’ expense) or just take what they like from the weaker prisoners.

This is so clearly irresponsible I can’t believe it has gone unchecked for so long.  It’s creating a dangerous situation for everybody involved and worst of all, at £4million a year, it’s wasting our money.

Yesterday, I learned that the government is now using taxpayers’ money to supply methadone to prisoners in the UK.  That’s £4million of our money to get prisoners high.


This has to top the list as one of the most appalling ways to waste taxpayers’ money.


It’s such a ridiculous programme I don’t know where to begin.


First of all, we’re talking about convicted criminals.  Why should taxpayers fund a criminal’s drug habit?  I’m not an expert, but I would be willing to guess that drugs contributed to the crimes that many of these people committed in the first place.  If prisons are supposed to rehabilitate inmates and reintegrate them into society, they should be striving to do just that, not substituting a heroin addiction with its legal equivalent to sedate their inmates.


And then there’s the fact that the government couldn’t even be bothered to involve a nurse in this exchange.  The drug is being doled out via vending machine - who thought this was a good idea?  I think I see a problem here; if you hand out a hard drug in a prison, what are the chances that it will end up in the right hands?  The prisoners could either develop a very profitable black market (at the taxpayers’ expense) or just take what they like from the weaker prisoners.

This is so clearly irresponsible I can’t believe it has gone unchecked for so long.  It’s creating a dangerous situation for everybody involved and worst of all, at £4million a year, it’s wasting our money.

Latest Blogs:

TaxPayers' Alliance Icon

Get nanny out of the nursery

12:00 PM 20, Oct 2017 Ben Ramanauskas

TaxPayers' Alliance Icon

Magna Carta - A Very English Tax Revolt

9:09 AM 26, Sep 2017 Daniel Pryor

TaxPayers' Alliance Icon

Who will defend the defenders?

12:03 PM 20, Sep 2017 Duncan Simpson

TaxPayers' Alliance Icon

What’s wrong with the all-ages graduate tax?

6:09 PM 18, Sep 2017 Jan Zeber

TaxPayers' Alliance Icon

Should taxpayers fund Zumba, facials and spas for the NHS?

4:02 PM 18, Sep 2017 Ben Ramanauskas