Following the publication of the Ministry of Justice report, Tackling racial disparity in the criminal justice system: 2020 in February this year, the HMPPS External Advice and Scrutiny Panel (EASP)—established following David Lammy's independent review in 2017—wrote to raise its concerns that it had been wrongly represented.

The report did not make clear that the EASP continued to have concerns that safeguards to address racially disproportionate outcomes in use of force were inadequate, and that they were very likely to persist in the use of PAVA incapacitant spray.

Following this, the Ministry of Justice has issued a correction to the report, published on 27 April, making this clear.

The corrected paragraph is highlighted (in red) below:

"Disproportionality considerations have been incorporated into the ‘readiness assessment’ for the rollout of PAVA incapacitant spray. This will see a requirement for prisons to demonstrate they are monitoring for any disproportionality in their use of force, they are able to understand any present trends and have appropriate action plans in place to tackle any identified disproportionality before they are signed off to be equipped with PAVA.

"The earlier version of this publication referenced engagement with the HMPPS External Advice and Scrutiny Panel on the disproportionality considerations which have been incorporated into the readiness assessments for the rollout of PAVA incapacitant spray. During this engagement the EASP argued that evidence shows racially disproportionate outcomes in use of force which persist, are unexplained, and, in their view, are therefore very likely to occur in the use of PAVA. Following publication, the EASP have expressed concern that the earlier version of this document did not sufficiently represent these concerns and have further highlighted that they currently do not feel there are sufficient safeguards in place to address these issues. The EASP will be consulted on the revised Use of Force policy framework."