IPRT - Irish Penal Reform Trust

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Facts:
  • 1. There are 3,688 people in prison custody in Ireland (24 August 2015)
  • 2. The rate of imprisonment in Ireland is 88 per 100,000 of population (Aug 2014)
  • 3. The prison population has increased by 400% since 1970.
  • 4. The average cost of imprisonment per prisoner was €65,542 in 2013, not including education expenditure.
  • 5. 60% of people serving sentences for 6 months or less are poor, and are often homeless people.
  • 6. The majority of Irish prisoners have never sat a State exam and over half left school before the age of 15.
  • 7. Four in ten children (under 16 years) on custodial remand have a learning disability.
  • 8. Over the past 14 years, the numbers in custody have increased by almost 100%.
  • 9. There are 330 prisoners in Cork, Limerick and Portlaoise prison without in-cell sanitation. (July 2014)
  • 10. In 2012, 22 people were imprisoned in relation to the non-payment of a civil debt.
  • 11. There were 400 committals under immigration law in 2012.
  • 12. 84 children aged under 18 were committed to prison in 2013.
  • 13. There were 3,495 sentenced committals for road traffic offences in 2011, representing 20% of the total.
  • 14. Cork Prison is operating at 129% of its design capacity. (26th January 2015)
  • 15. In 2013, the annual cost per child in child detention schools was €314,000.
  • 16. Dóchas women’s prison is operating at design capacity, with 104 women held there. (26th Jan 2015)
  • 17. Prisoners in Ireland are 25 times more likely to come from (and return to) a seriously deprived area.
  • 18. Of 193 prisoners held on 23-hour lock up, 44 are aged under 21. (19th March 2013)
  • 19. The total number in prison has decreased by 5.8% in 2013 compared with 2012.
  • 20. 85% of fine defaulters are back in custody within four years.
  • 21. 2.6% increase on the 2012 average number of female offenders in custody. (2013)
  • 22. There was a decrease of 2.2% in committals for non-payment of court ordered fines in 2013 on the 2012 figure, i.e., from 8,304 in 2012 to 8,121 in 2013.
  • 24. 89.5% of sentenced committals in 2013 were for 12 months or less.
  • 25. In 2008, of 520 prisoners who enrolled in school at Mountjoy Prison, 20% could not read or write and 30% could only sign their names.
  • 26. There were 8,965 committals for non-payment of court-ordered fines in 2014.
  • 27. There are 4 children imprisoned in St Patrick's Institution, which is in breach of human rights standards. (12 Feb 2015)
  • 28. There were 348 prisoners (10% of the prison population) aged 50+ (July 2014)
  • 29. There was a 75% increase in daily prison population aged 50+ from 2008 to 2014
  • 30. Since 1997 more than 1,930 new prison spaces have been added to the prison system.
  • 31. There are 42 'protection' prisoners being held on 23-hr lock-up (July 2014).
  • 32. Over 70% of prisoners are unemployed on committal.

Welcome to the Irish Penal Reform Trust

The Irish Penal Reform Trust is Ireland's leading non-governmental organisation campaigning for the rights of people in prison and the progressive reform of Irish penal policy.

IPRT in the News

The Pat Kenny Show

Observations

General Scheme of Bail…

IPRT Response

Children (Amendment) Bill

IPRT Response

Victims' Rights Directive

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