Inspectorate calls for further improvements to prisoner safety

CJI Chief Inspector Brendan McGuigan has urged the NI Prison Service and South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust to enhance prisoner safety within the next nine months by improving how they deal with issues of self-harm, suicide, bullying and drug misuse. View report page
CJI Chief Inspector Brendan  McGuigan said many criminal justice agencies have invested heavily in responding to the threats posed by serious and organised crime.

"Organised crime gangs operate at local, national and international levels.  They have been responsible for the growth of the illegal drug trade and the exploitation, murder and misery associated with their activities, is a constant concern.

While CJI Inspectors were supportive of the coordinating work undertaken by the Organised Crime Task Force, Mr McGuigan said the collective efforts of government and criminal justice agencies could be improved by focusing on effective activities and outcomes linked to jointly agreed priorities.   The report also recommended that police Districts, working in collaboration with the Police Service of Northern Ireland's Crime Operations Department, need to take greater ownership and responsibility for tackling serious and organised crime.

"CJI recognises that implementing these recommendations may be challenging in the current economic environment, but they are designed to help criminal justice agencies reduce the threat and risk of harm to the public from those engaged in serious and organised crime," concluded the Chief Inspector.