Human Rights in Prison

IPRT promotes a penal system that is: humane as experienced by people who are detained, protects and promotes human rights and equality, and strives to achieve international best practice in formal regimes, daily practices and overall culture.

It is the sentence of deprivation of liberty in itself that is the core punitive sanction, the conditions and treatment while in prison should not be used as additional punishment.

Accordingly, we believe that while restrictions on the freedom of movement are necessarily introduced while in prison, prisoners should retain all other rights to the greatest possible degree while serving their sentences. In particular, IPRT believes that prisoners have the right to be treated with dignity and respect for their rights; they have the right to safety and security of the person, the right to be treated humanely and be free from torture, degrading or inhuman treatment or punishment.

We work to ensure that regimes in prisons and children detention facilities are humane, and reflect human rights standards as a minimum in the short term, striving for international best practice in the medium to long term.

EUROPEAN TORTURE COMMITTEE PRESENTS DAMNING INDICTMENT OF IRISH PRISON SYSTEM 10th February 2011

The fifth report on Ireland from the Council of Europe Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Degrading Treatment (CPT), published today (Thursday, 10th Feb 2011), is the most critical yet, and a damning indictment of a prison system that is failing to meet the most basic human rights standards… Read more

Committee for the Prevention of Torture: 2011 Report 10th February 2011

The Committee for the Prevention of Torture has published its latest report on conditions in Irish prisons. Read more

Ombudsman calls for extension of remit to include prisons 4th February 2011

The Ombudsman, Emily O’Reilly has begun lobbying the prospective leaders of the next government for an expanded role for her office. Proposals include the extension of the Ombudsman's remit to include prisons. IPRT fully supports this call. Read more

International Human Rights Day 2010 10th December 2010

It is International Human Rights Day 2010, and 30% of prisoners in Ireland are still 'slopping out' - the chronically overcrowded prisons at Cork and Mountjoy included - despite assurances since 1992 that this grim, degrading practice would be eliminated. Read more

Irish Human Rights Commission Annual Report 2009 24th August 2010

The Irish Human Rights Commission (IHRC) today launched their annual report. IPRT welcomed the calls from the Dr Maurice Manning, president of the IHRC, for the Government to commit to improving the situation in Irish Prisons. Read more

Ireland: First National Report under the UN CAT 11th November 2009

The Government has just submitted its long-awaited First National Report under the UN Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (UN CAT). Read more

Irish Times: European prison crowding ruling could lead to similar case here 9th November 2009

The European Court of Human Rights rules that prison overcrowding in itself can violate Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights (the right to freedom from torture or inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.) Read more

IPRT Position Paper 4: Human Rights in Prison 20th September 2009 PDF documents

A position paper outlining IPRT's core principle that human rights must be respected within the penal system. Read more

Standards for the Inspection of Prisons in Ireland 1st September 2009

A set of standards, published by the Inspector of Prisons, against which the assessment of prison conditions in Ireland will be measured. IPRT welcomes the inclusion of international human rights standards, and the recognition that they constitute a benchmark... Read more

Joint ICCPR submission to the UN Human Rights Committee: 1-year update 31st August 2009 PDF documents

In August 2009, IPRT, FLAC and ICCL made a joint submission to the UN Human Rights Committee as a 1-year update on the Concluding Observations of the Committee following their visit in 2008. Read more

viewed here