Still Watching the Ashley Smith Inquest….

…but have not, obviously, been writing as much about it lately.

Partly that is just because I’ve been busy – end of semester, job search, and busy time of year for hubby’s business

but partly, I think, it is because it is getting so freaking frustrating!!

To spend so much time on establishing that CSC was incapable of managing Ashley’s behaviour, or even keeping her alive – while ignoring the 3 years that resulted in her being so very difficult to manage – seems to me to be an exercise in futility.

It seems clear to me that there will be important recommendations that arise from this inquest – but we already know that  when committees and inquests and even public inquiries provide CSC with recommendations, they typically manage to twist their implementation into something entirely different – if they even bother to address them at all…. so I’m finding it hard to retain much hope that things will actually change enough to matter.

Another aspect of my frustration: so many of the issues that contributed to Ashley’s death are tied into the notion of “culture” within the prison – and for the most part, this “culture” is something that is talked about as something that can not be changed.

Children who throw apples at mailmen should not wind up in CSC to begin with….even if she had not wound up dead, she should never have been there…..and the scope of this inquest is going to do nothing whatsoever to address that.

So much of this inquest focuses directly on those issues of surveillance which are the focus of my research – and yet, still…we are choosing to look at only small bits in isolation… at data-streams instead of whole people.  Looking, but not seeing.



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