International award for Maghaberry Prison

Date published: 31 October 2019

The staff of Maghaberry Prison have received an Excellence Award from the International Corrections and Prisons Association (ICPA) at their annual conference in Buenos Aires.

The award is in recognition of “outstanding programmes which contribute to the safe reintegration of offenders into the community”.  

Presenting the award to Director General Ronnie Armour, and Maghaberry Governor Dave Kennedy, ICPA President Peter Severin said, “The commitment shown by staff at Maghaberry in transforming the Prison from one of the most dangerous in Europe to an establishment that is delivering high quality outcomes for the men imprisoned there is both remarkable and exemplary.  This was achieved in an impressive timescale and was delivered with ever reducing financial resources.”

Accepting the award on behalf of the staff, Ronnie Armour said, “The staff at Maghaberry deserve the recognition they received and I want to congratulate everyone who works there on what was an amazing achievement.  It is always to be welcomed when Inspectors make positive reports, but it is something really special when your peers, having assessed what is happening around the world, acknowledge what you have achieved.

“Everyone across the Northern Ireland Prison Service, our staff and partners, should be very proud because while the award was for the staff at Maghaberry, it also recognises how far we have come as a service and acknowledges the work we are doing to challenge and support those in our care.”

Notes to editors: 

1. The award is ‘Offender Management and Reintegration Award” and was presented at the ICPA Annual Conference in Buenos Aires on Wednesday 30 October.  The Conference had 500 delegates from custodial organisations across the world.

2. Peter Severin has been the Commissioner, Corrective Services New South Wales, Australia since September 2012.

3. Maghaberry Prison is the only Category ‘A’ prison in Northern Ireland and also operates as a remand prison for all adult male prisoners in the country. It accommodates a range of sentenced prisoners such as life sentence, indeterminate and extended custody prisoners, separated prisoners, fine defaulters and civil prisoners.

4. At 31 October 2019, there were 915 prisoners at Maghaberry Prison.

5. For all media enquiries, please contact the DOJ Press Office on 028 9052 6444. Out of office hours please contact the duty press officer on 028 9037 8110.

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