The prison population is expected to decrease over the coming weeks, thus reducing the dangerous situation of overcrowding.
Steadroy “Cutie” Benjamin, the Attorney General and Minister of Public Safety, confirmed that the prison population now stands at 210. The institution was constructed in 1735 (which is how its common name was derived) and intended to house 150 inmates.
Benjamin says that 43 inmates who are now serving time for various offences, and whose sentences will end shortly, are expected to be released. However, Acting Prison Superintendent Jermaine Anthony says this figure is likely to be revised and more inmates should be sent out.
Meanwhile, there has been one new COVID-19 infection at Her Majesty’s Prison. This reportedly follows the testing of a person who was placed on remand at the penal facility.
A policy recently put in place at the prison requires that persons placed on remand, or convicted for a term, or about to be discharged, be tested for the virus.
Notably, “those entering are tested before being allowed to mix with the confined population of prisoners,” this week’s Cabinet Notes say.
They add that “the list of diseases for which a potential government employee is to be lawfully tested will now include the new Coronavirus disease.”
Accordingly, the Notes indicate that all prisoners and staff have been tested and 177 have been vaccinated.
Reports say that the more-than 30 inmates who contracted the virus, and were placed in isolation at the Defence Force Crabbes compound, have recovered. They are said to be back among the prison population.