The Harris Review

Independent Review into Self-Inflicted Deaths in NOMS Custody of 18-24 year olds

This is the official webpage for the Harris Review. The purpose of the review is to make recommendations to reduce the risk of future self-inflicted deaths in custody. All self-inflicted deaths are a tragedy and we want to ensure those that occur whilst individuals are under the protection of the state are subject to the most thorough scrutiny. Lord Toby Harris, Chair of the Independent Advisory Panel on Deaths in Custody, will lead this review and will be supported by members of the Independent Advisory Panel. Your reflections on the review and on this most important topic are very welcome.

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The Harris Review



On 6th February 2014 the Justice Secretary announced an independent review into Self-inflicted Deaths in Custody of 18-24 year olds (the Harris Review). The terms of reference of the review can be found here. The Review was chaired by Lord Toby Harris and lasted between April 2014 and March 2015.  The purpose of the Review was to make recommendations to reduce the risk of future self-inflicted deaths in custody. 

 The Review focused on a variety of issues, including vulnerability, information sharing, safety, staff prisoner relationships, family contact, and staff training.  It explored these through a call for submissions, which can be viewed on this website.   It also examined existing evidence and commissioned innovative new research and data analysis, the output of which is now available and published on this website.  The panel, whose details are available here, met with senior stakeholders and people affected by, or otherwise interested in, self-inflicted deaths of young adults in custody.  

Documentation relating to the Review, including minutes of meetings and the summaries of hearings with stakeholders, is available by following the links on these pages.

If you have any queries regarding the review please contact the IAP Secretariat via the Contact page.

Call for Submissions


Between March and 18th July 2014, the Review issued a call for submissions from individuals, organisations and other key stakeholders.  The submission could be based either on personal or professional experience, an organisation’s experience, or knowledge from research or other means.  It was not mandated that the evidence should conform to any specific format.  Responders could either answer the questions that the Review set, or alternatively they were able to submit in a format of their own choosing.  A copy of the original call for submissions can be accessed here.


The Harris Report


On the 1st July 2015, the Harris Review published its completed report into self-inflicted deaths in National Offender Management Service custody of 18-24 year olds.  The final report can be found here: Changing Prisons, Saving Lives: Report of the Independent Review into Self-inflicted Deaths in Custody of 18-24 year olds.


 The Government’s Response


The Government’s response to the Harris Review Report on the Independent Review into Self-Inflicted Deaths in Custody of 18-24 year olds was published on 17 December 2015.  




Last updated: July 2015


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