New clothing, PJs, and footwear in €1.3m package for prisoners

New clothing, PJs, and footwear in €1.3m package for prisoners

The State is to spend more than €1.3m on new clothing and footwear for the country’s prison population over the next four years.

A contract notice has been issued by the Office of Government Procurement for tenders to supply a range of 28 different types of clothing and footwear for inmates in the 14 detention facilities operated by the Irish Prison Service, including Mountjoy and Portlaoise and the two female prisons in the Dóchas Centre and Limerick.

It is estimated that approximately €1.32m will be spent on kitting out prisoners over the term of the contract, which is for a three-year period with a maximum extension of 12 months. The annual expenditure on the cost of new clothing and footwear is calculated at €330,000. There are around 4,000 prisoners in jails here at any one time.

Under current prison regulations, prisoners do not wear a uniform but are supplied with a range of clothing which can be changed twice weekly — and, in certain circumstances, they may be allowed to wear their own clothing.

Suppliers will be required to provide 20,000 polo shirts in either dark green or red and some 20,000 light grey tracksuits for men and almost 2,000 similar tracksuits for women. For outside use, more than 2,000 red anoraks have been ordered.

In relation to footwear, the contract provides for almost 4,800 pairs of black runner shoes and the same number in white, as well as 104,000 pairs of socks. For nightwear, the order includes more than 550 pairs of pyjamas and 200 dressing gowns for male prisoners and almost 1,600 nightgowns for female prisoners.

There is also a large order for boxer shorts, Y-fronts, T-shirts, vests, bras, and briefs.

The successful bidder will be required to operate a warehouse of clothing and deliver items to individual jails as well as facilitate returns.

A previous contract to supply prison clothing awarded in 2016 to Call Us, a supplier of leisurewear from Killybegs, Co Donegal was valued at just under €550,000.

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