‘NI Prison Service setting standards across the UK’ – Justice Minister

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Tuesday, June 9th, 2020

Justice Minister Naomi Long today welcomed the findings of two new reports on Hydebank Wood Secure College and Female Prison.

The report on the young offender’s centre and Ash House, which houses women prisoners, was compiled by the Criminal Justice Inspectorate NI (CJINI) and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons (HMIP), the Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA) and Education and Training Inspectorate (ETI).



Commenting on the findings, Naomi Long told Newry Times, “This is an exceptional report and highlights the continued progress of the Northern Ireland Prison Service.

“Safety and respect for prisoners and staff are paramount in rehabilitation, and this has been recognised by inspectors to be at the highest level in Hydebank Wood.

“The report also highlights examples of innovation which have resulted in Hydebank Wood becoming a model of best practice in the management of females and young offenders.

“Indeed, it is truly impressive that we are now setting standards for prison facilities across the UK.”



Naomi Long added, “I would commend Director-General Ronnie Armour and his senior team on their continued vision and commitment to transform our Prison Service.

“Since becoming Minister I have been hugely impressed by their work and the emphasis it places on building positive relationships between staff and those placed in our care.

“I know the Prison Service is determined to build on this very positive and encouraging report through its person-centred approach to challenging and supporting individuals to change,”  she added.

Director-General Ronnie Armour also paid tribute to Governors and staff at Hydebank Wood.



“This excellent inspection report could not have been achieved without the hard work and dedication of Governor Gary Milling and his staff at Hydebank Wood,” he said.

“Their efforts to help those young men and women who find themselves in our care have deservedly been acknowledged, and alongside our health care and education partners, I believe much more remarkable progress can be achieved as we move forward,” he added.


Keep up to date with all the latest Northern Ireland Coronavirus / Covid-19 news HERE



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