The Scottish Government has been urged to sort out staffing “problems” at HMP Grampian prison in Peterhead, and return young offenders to the institution.
The call was made by Lewis Macdonald after Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf suggested the rate of staff turnover at the jail was double the national average.
The North East Labour MSP has written to Mr Yousaf after the Justice Secretary made the revelation in parliament in an answer to a parliamentary question.
Staffing at HMP Grampian has been a long-standing issue with 2018 figures suggesting the prison had the highest prison officer turnover of any Scottish jail.
Yesterday the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) said the staff attrition rate had improved since Mr Yousaf told MSPs at the end of last year it was double the Scottish average.
But Mr Macdonald has called on ministers to resolve staffing problems, a move that would enable to young offenders to be moved back to the institution.
Two months after the new prison in Peterhead was opened in 2014 there was a riot resulting in young offenders being moved to Polmont in the Central Belt.
Mr Macdonald said: “Young offenders from Grampian were originally supposed to be housed at YOI Grampian, not least to allow young offenders from the North East to be detained nearer home, where they could benefit from regular family contact.”
A SPS spokesman said: “The Scottish Prison Service recognises the continuing challenges in relation to the recruitment and retention of staff.
“We continue to support the establishment with staff from elsewhere in the estate who are working at HMP YOI Grampian on detached duty.”