Protest at HMP & YOI Styal. 29th January 2022 

To herald a number of protests at women’s estates in the UK, led by Keep Prisons Single Sex, 30 women activists from: 

  • Northern RadFem Network
  • Manchester Feminist Network
  • Women’s Rights Network
  • Sheffield Women of Steel
  • Liverpool Resisters
  • Womanchester

Answered the call from across the north of the country and descended onto HMP & YOI Styal with feminist banners, whistles, flags and shield-shaped placards to draw attention to the dangerous policy of allowing male convicts to self-identity as women and enter these estates. 

Photos were taken on the prison grounds , but when we were asked to leave by uniformed officers, , we did and we lined the road outside. 

The protest was intentionally loud, with Belstaffie leading the chants of,

  • “No males in females jails!”
  • “Women Aren’t Human Shields!”
  • “Keep Prisons Single Sex!”
  • “Whose Jails? Our jails!”

With her very loud megaphone. 

The public sounded their car-horns in support of our protest. We were not able to leaflet visitors, due to weather conditions and the fact that we didn’t want to be insensitive. 

Two speeches were made.  Rebekah Wershbale delivered an emotional, personal speech,  from a female inmate’s perspective. A video and text of her speech can be found here.

Then Belstaffie gave an illuminating  speech from a Prison/Probation  specialist’s perspective. Her speech can be found here with text. 

All activists left the protest safely. 

There are plans for more protests up and down the UK. If you want to join us, please contact the groups named above.