A ‘hard rain’ is needed at the Ministry of Justice

When was the last time you read about a cabinet minister saying officials had him ‘played for a fool’? Our Lord Chancellor, Robert Buckland, is nobody’s fool but he’s certainly had the mushroom treatment when it comes to conditions at the privately-run Rainsbrook secure children’s unit. It’s a sign of a much deeper cultural malaise familiar to all of us who once worked for the Ministry of Justice or its agencies.  A report into Rainsbrook’s operation released this week by the Commons Justice Select Committee exhausted superlatives when it described the incompetence of the contractor running the unit and its legions of state monitors, which allowed the institution to lock youngsters