How to talk like a Wentworth Prison inmate

As Australian hit show Prisoner: Cell Block H gets an update on Channel 5, we brush up on our slammer slang...

Wentworth Prison slams onto our screens tonight and while there’s a Bea, a Meg, a Vera and plenty more to nod to Prisoner: Cell Block H fans (a prison, cells, bars…), it’s a grittier, darker and far more violent version of the beloved Aussie show.


But at the heart of it, it’s a drama following a bunch of misfit women who are experiencing life on the inside.

In preparation, we thought it was high time we brushed up on our prison slang. Notepads at the ready…

Rat: a person who is alleged to have informed on another. They are usually put in the protection unit

Give up: to inform or have ‘told on’ someone

Screw: correction officer

L-plates: means you’re serving a life sentence

Crim: a convicted criminal

All day: a life sentence, as in ‘I’m doin’ all day’

Back door parole: to die in prison

Spin: a search (usually of a cell)

Cell Warrior: a prisoner who’s only tough when they’re behind bars

Chin check: when you hit another inmate on the jaw to see if they’ll fight back

Dry snitching: informing on another inmate by talking loudly about them or acting strangely around officers rather than naming names

Duck: when an officer gives away information about other officers to the inmates

Hold your mud: to resist giving up information that could incriminate another inmate

In the car: to be in on a deal or plan

Jam (Jam roll): rhyming slang for parole

Skins: cigarette papers

Peter: a cell

Salmon: tabacco

Diesel: prison tea

Shipped out: when a criminal moves from one prison to another

Rabbit: a criminal who has tried to escape or often has a plan to escape

Swing: when cell mates communicate from cell to cell

Little fellers: cigarette butts

Stretch: meaning sentence

Tear up: to beat up


Rack Off: Leave me alone