Prison killing proves reform policy has failed

THE killing of Gary Douche in Mountjoy prison calls out for a more far-reaching response from the Government than the limited inquiry set up by the Minister for Justice, Michael McDowell.

While the killing highlights appalling conditions in Mountjoy, it also reminds us of this Government’s abject failure in the area of prison reform.

If there is one characteristic of the Department of Justice in the past 30 years, it is surely a consistent failure to engage meaningfully with prisoners and provide services appropriate to rehabilitation.

As a first step in showing commitment to change, the Government should immediately remove responsibility for the delivery of proper health and educational services to all prisoners from the Irish Prison Service to the Department of the Taoiseach.

Garrett Sheehan

130 Francis Street

Dublin 8

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