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Sunday Mirror: Ireland lagging on jail privacy

6th February 2011

In the Irish Sunday Mirror, Samuel Hamilton reports on new figures which reveal that almost half of the men held in Irish prisons must use the toilet in front of other prisoners.1,866 prisoners were forced to go without privacy in December 2010, around 42% of the jail population at the time.

[These figures refer to those who had to use in-cell sanitation in front of others; the numbers do not include those who had to slop out in front of others.]

The article quotes Liam Herrick of the Irish Penal Reform Trust:

"It is clearly a blight on the prison system here and it has not been afforded any political priority."

Minister for Justice, Brendan Smith is also quoted on the "major progress" in recent years in terms of addressing and eliminating the problems presented by slopping out.

The reality is that over 18 years since the CPT first raised serious concerns about this inhumane and degrading practice in Irish prisons, 28% of prison accommodation does not have in-cell sanitation.

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