Irish Penal Reform Trust

IPRT Submission to the Value for Money and Policy Review of Prisoner Escort Services

29th November 2018

In March 2017, IPRT was invited to make a submission to the Department of Justice and Equality 'Value for Money and Policy Review of Prisoner Escort Services in the Criminal Justice Sector'.

The need for a review of the prisoner escort service model had been previously recommended by national and international bodies, including the Inspector of Prisons and the Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT).

While welcoming the review process in 2017, IPRT’s position is that any Value for Money review of effectiveness and efficiency must, in the first instance, ensure that legal and human rights are protected, and that Ireland meets both its domestic and international obligations.

The purpose of IPRT’s submission is to: 

  1. Highlight key issues that should be examined during the review process, primarily relating to prisoner safety and well-being while under escort, drawing on best practice in neighbouring jurisdictions.
  2. Draw attention to the impact of the redeployment of prison staff as a result of Prison Service Escort Corps (PSEC) staff shortages, and its negative effects on prison regimes, including access to education and training activities. 

Read the IPRT submission from March 2017 here.

On 29 November 2018, the Minister for Justice and Equality published the findings of the review, with a commitment to establish a delivery oversight group to further assess the recommendations and put in place an implementation programme.

Read the Department of Justice 'Value For Money and Policy Review - Prisoner Escorts in the Criminal Justice System' report here.

Respect for rights in the penal system with prison as a last resort.



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