Justice Minister Naomi Long has announced a review of Care and Supervision Units in Northern Ireland’s three prisons.
Naomi Long said: “The Northern Ireland Prison Service has made huge progress in the past number of years. Their work is regularly and robustly scrutinised by Criminal Justice Inspection Northern Ireland and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons, as well as the Prisoner Ombudsman. All three prisons have been subject to an unannounced inspection in the last three years and that has included their Care and Supervision Units.
“The most recent inspection at Maghaberry contained no recommendations for the work in that Unit. Indeed inspectors stated, ‘staff managed prisoners confidently and were aware of the individual needs of the men in their care. Prisoners we spoke to were complimentary about staff and appreciated the help they received.’
“However I recognise, that due to the nature and purpose of these Units, it is important that periodic reviews are carried out into their use in our prisons. The Prison Service is open and transparent and wants to provide the highest levels of assurance to the wider community.
“Therefore in order to ensure public confidence is maintained and following a request from the Director General, I have agreed to invite the Chief Inspector of Criminal Justice Northern Ireland to carry out a thorough review of CSUs across the three prisons.”
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