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Report highlights continued failings of Prison Service

16 December, 2009 - by Alex Maskey

Sinn Féin Policing and Justice Spokesperson Alex Maskey MLA has slammed the findings of yet another report highlighting delays in the implementation of numerous recommendations within Maghaberry Prison since the death of prisoner Colin Bell.

Speaking today Mr Maskey said;

“There has obviously been a huge deal of concern throughout the community as a result of Colin Bell’s death and the findings of the subsequent investigation by the Prisoner Ombudsman as well as this latest result.

Unfortunately, it seems as though all the warnings have been ignored, recommendations have gone unimplemented and we have seen vulnerable prisoners die as a result.

It is clear that a fundamental sea-change is needed within the Prison system.

The latest findings indicate yet again that the Prison Service has to do substantially more to ensure the safety and wellbeing of prisoners being held in the system here; the findings also fly in the face of commitments made by British Minister Paul Goggins following the death of Colin Bell: "I intend that this tragic death will be a watershed for the North’s Prison Service. "I am determined that the Prison Service will instill a consistent culture of care for all prisoners, but especially those who pose a danger to themselves." CRÍOCH

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