Justice and Health Ministers visit Hydebank Wood College

Date published: 27 September 2016

Justice Minister Claire Sugden MLA and Health Minister Michelle O’Neill MLA today visited Hydebank Wood College to discuss health issues in prisons.

The Ministers were accompanied by the Prison Service Director General Sue McAllister, and Governor of the College, Richard Taylor.  They also met prison staff, healthcare professionals from the South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust and students from Hydebank Wood College.

Claire Sugden said: “At any given time up to a quarter of the prison population will have serious mental health issues and our Departments will continue to work together to ensure we meet the needs of those in our care.

“I appreciate the great work done by our prison staff who work with some very challenging people every day to keep them safe and support their rehabilitation.  By addressing mental health issues in prison, both the Prison Service and our partners in health play an important role in building a safer community.”

Health Minister Michelle O’Neill said: “My Department is committed to working together with our justice colleagues to ensure that the people who come into our prison system receive the high standard of health and well-being we are all entitled to.

“I'm happy to be here today to see for myself the good work that has been recognised in various awards to healthcare staff and justice colleagues working collaboratively for the benefit of the students in Hydebank Wood College.”

Notes to editors: 

  1. Opened in 1979, Hydebank Wood accommodates male young offenders and all women prisoners who are committed to custody by the courts.
  2. Hydebank Wood transitioned to a Secure College on 1 April 2015.
  3. All media enquiries should be directed to the Department of Justice Press Office 028 90526444.  Out of office hours please contact the duty press officer via pager number 07699 715440 and your call will be returned.

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