Fresh from the horse’s mouth: Spice

Spice has been an epidemic in Britain for a years now. These once called ”legal highs” have shown to be incredibly addictive and dangerous. In the past two years the amount of deaths from these substances is three times more than the collectives death from 2004 to 2013.

What’s interesting is that a lot of these deaths happened in many of Britain’s prisons. Which begs the question: How easy is it to actually get these drugs in our prisons?

I got a chance to speak to two prisoners of HM Prison Moorlands. Both of these males will remain unnamed. They allowed me to ask them about their experiences and some of the ways that these drugs become available to them.

Male, 26, ”It’s easy for people to smuggle stuff in during visits. Especially in this prison. They don’t check the people who come to visit that well. But then again how well can they check them? Not long ago there was a drone carrying a package that simply got dropped over the gates. It’s easy. There’s endless ways”.

Male, 21, ”Spice doesn’t have a strong smell and it’s not like it comes they bring it in fancy packets. It’s just paper sprayed with chemicals. Crumple it and smoke it in a fag and you’ve got something to do for the rest of the day. I don’t smoke the stuff though you see people doing crazy things to get a hold of it in here.”

I then decided to ask the first Male if he had smoked it: ”Yes. All the time, what else am I meant to do in here? It makes sitting in my cell all day easier. You see people get smoke it and just start laying on the floor shaking. It’s bad stuff but what else are you going to do?”.

I talked to him about his sentence and his plans for when he gets out, and whether he will stop smoking the drug or not. He plans to stop smoking it as soon as possible because he has a child on the outside that he has only just been allowed to see again, thanks to the mother.

Although I couldn’t help but feel for this individual, it’s still shocking how people like him can access these so easily. The other male also informed me he has access to a phone and updates his Facebook frequently.