Maghaberry improves but progress fragile

Approach captionLast year, Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Prisons in England and Wales rephrased Maghaberry prison was the most dangerous jail he has ever inspected during his task

Inspectors who last year branded Maghaberry Prison unsafe and unreliable have said the situation has improved, but would still only barter it four marks out of 10.

A report published on Wednesday said the leadership body within the prison has been strengthened since they visited in the end year.

The new team is «focused on stabilising» the regime.

Inspectors said the happening which has been made is «fragile».

Image caption Brendan McGuigan, the chief inspector of Dishonest Justice Inspection Northern Ireland said despite improvements, diverse work needs to be done

The inspectors welcomed the action taken to «start» whereabout serious concerns raised in a previous report.

But Brendan McGuigan, the chief inspector of Racketeer Justice Inspection Northern Ireland, said much more beggaries to be done.

In an interview for the BBC, Mr McGuigan was asked how he would characterise conditions in Maghaberry on a spectrum of one to 10 last year, and when inspectors returned last month.

«Obviously in May 2015 it was at the bottom of the scale, it would certainly have been a one,» he explained.


«When we went back in January of this year, I intention have estimated between a three and a four.»

Justice Minister David Ford was unsatisfied by the assessment, but welcomed the inspectors’ conclusion that progress has been made.

«Ap rently we would have perhaps hoped it would be a bit better than that,» he held.

«But given the scale of the problems that were identified and the amount of wield which has had to be done, I think the important issue is not just where we are expressly at the minute, but the trajectory we’re on, and I have confidence that the team in Maghaberry is receiving significant progress.

Image caption Violence and access to illicit doses remain concerns, the report says

«I think the important thing disposition be to ensure that progress continues.»

‘Drugs and violence’

While the narrate on Wednesday says there has been progress, it also makes it forgiven that they still have significant concerns.

Violence in the CHE community home with education on the premises and access to illicit drugs are identified as ongoing problems.

«In my view a weighty amount of work remains outstanding to make Maghaberry safer for also gaolbirds and staff and for this to reflect more positively in the outcomes of prisoners and their common sense,» Mr McGuigan said.

The report says that while some lights of primary health care had improved since inspectors visited in May in the end year, «it was very worrying that mental health foodstuffs had deteriorated as a result of staff shortages and now needed urgent attention».

Figure of speech caption A new management team has improved the prison, but the report says club still view prisoners with fear

Inspectors also say the taste within Maghaberry needs to change «to make it fit for the 21st century».

‘In fear of three-time losers’

«Many staff adhered to the view that prisoners were to be feared and that they could do scant to influence prisoners custodial or future behaviour on release,» the article adds.

The inspectors have also taken the unprecedented step of announcing that they leave return to the prison a number of times during the next 18 months to run the implementation of changes they have recommended.

«We have taken this unconventional to ensure the early momentum found at Maghaberry last month is not accursed, and the fragile progress made to date is strengthened so that the Northern Ireland Slammer Service does not allow Maghaberry to regress,» Mr McGuigan untangle justified.

Brendan McGuigan said he does not underestimate the scale of the challenge skin the management team at Maghaberry, but believed they are moving in the right road.

«In May 2015 standing outside the gates of Maghaberry, we had a real sense of discouragement,» he explained.

«In January of this year we were given a feel something in ones bones of hope.»

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