Jail guards are being taught street slang after inmates complained of a language barrier.
Young cons griped that older prison staff could not understand them, which often resulted in unfair treatment.
After feedback from a focus group, warders have been sent for refresher courses on youth speak.
Among the words drawn to attention are “Wagwan” – slang for “What’s going on?” – “blud” which means “brother” and “roadman”, a term for a drug dealer.
A source said: “Staff have a hard enough time without learning how to talk like Eminem. I’m sure this is well meaning, but it comes across as pretty bonkers.”
The street slang sessions are being laid on at HMP High Down.
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An Independent Monitoring Board report found staff at the jail, in Banstead, Surrey, “do not understand body language and the way young men express themselves”.
It said the way lags acted and talked was often “perceived as negative or aggressive” and led to more being unfairly punished. One inmate told the focus group: “You try to do the right thing but you only get heard if you kick off.”
The Prison Service said: “Staff have received specialist training on managing the small group of young offenders at HMP High Down and education and work opportunities are being increased.”