Parole Board To Review More Cases, For Release Of Inmates Due To COVID-19

The Parole Board within the Department of Correctional Services will be meeting more frequently to review cases of offenders that should be released from prison.

Also, the Government is also making arrangements for bed ridden and mentally ill inmates to receive greater care.

This comes in light of an increase in COVID-19 cases within facilities.

Despite the Government’s implementation of health protocols within penal institutions across the island, the number of infected inmates and correctional staff continues to rise.

The suggestion of early release for low risk inmates, to reduce the spread of the virus was rejected. However, according to Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of National Security, Matthew Samuda; the Parole Board will be reviewing more cases.

“The Parole Board has committed to meeting as often as is necessary as soon as project files are prepared to ensure that persons are given a fair hearing to determine if they can be released so they’re not held in our facilities any longer than they need to be,” he said.

He adds that in the case of bed ridden and mentally ill inmates arrangements will be announced soob for them to receive greater care.

He also adds that, “some of them, we believe, as they go through the process with the courts, will be released soon. Those that are not released soon because the courts do not see it fit to do, will be in a facility that can provide the time of care that all human beings who are infirmed should receive.”

Samuda was speaking during the unveiling ceremony of two broiler units with a capacity of up to 9,000 birds at the Tamarind Farm Adult Correctional Facility, in Spanish Town.

The Poultry Production Programme is expected to produce 98 tonnes of broiler meat for inmate consumption and will see the department saving approximately $13 million dollars annually.

He adds that this will improve the quality of rehabilitation and aid in the reintegration of inmates.

Robian Williams reports for CVM LIVE: