Ireland’s Second Periodic Review under the United Nations Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (UNCAT) took place on 27th and 28th July 2017 in Geneva. IPRT made a submission in advance, and travelled to Geneva to engage with the process.
The UN Committee against Torture published its Concluding Observations on Friday 11th August 2017, available to read here.
In the Committee’s thorough list of recommendations, prisoner issues and prison conditions receive significant attention. IPRT welcomes the Committee's observations, with many reflecting issues IPRT had highlighted in our submission to the Committee.
While recognising the positive steps taken by the State since Ireland’s first review in 2011 - in particular, they note the closure of St Patrick’s Institution, the adoption of the Criminal Justice (Community Service) (Amendment) Act 2011 and the Irish Prison Service Strategic Plan 2016-2018 envisaging the elimination of “slopping out” - prisoner issues and prison conditions are listed here, which include: independent monitoring of places of deprivation of liberty and OPCAT; fundamental legal safeguards; conditions of detention; inter-prisoner violence, and complaints in the prison system.
Ireland’s third periodic review under the Convention is due to take place in 2021.
Media Coverage of UNCAT Concluding Observations on Ireland:
- RTÉ Six One News: UN committee calls for increased support for asylum seekers
- The Irish Times: UN committee against torture urges inquiry on all mother and baby homes
- BreakingNews.ie: UN Committee against Torture to insist on action from Government
- KFM Radio News piece: Government Under Pressure To Ratify Treaty Against Torture
- Irish Legal News: UNCAT: Penal reform group welcomes prison health care and solitary confinement recommendations
IPRT published our Submission prior to the hearing, which can be read here.
A briefing containing recommendations and additional information can be read here.
27 July 2017 summary record of the hearing is available here.
28 July 2017 summary record of the hearing, including detailed responses from the Irish State delegation, is available here.
UN Committee against Torture publishes Concluding Observations on Ireland here.
Concluding Observations from Ireland’s first review in 2011 are available here.