Facilities for infected prisoners

in News · 25-03-2020 12:35:00 · 0 Comments

The Porto jail and the Caxias prison hospital have two wards reserved for prisoners who are infected with the new coronavirus, and the security pavilions of the Linhó and Paços de Ferreira prison are also available.

In a response sent to the Lusa agency, the Directorate-General for Reinsertion and Prison Services (DGRSP) indicates that the two rear wards for interning inmates who may contract the new coronavirus are located in the Porto Prison and the São João de Deus Prison Hospital, in Caxias, together with the security pavilions of the Linhó and Paços de Ferreira Prison.

The Contingency Plan for covid-19 prison services requires that prisoners who now enter prisons are required to comply with a "14-day prophylactic quarantine", with daily clinical monitoring.

During the state of emergency enacted in the country, visits to prisoners were gradually banned, and on 16 March, "they ceased in all prisons and educational centres", according to the DGRSP.

However, and to compensate those who are in detention, "three telephone calls per day lasting five minutes each are allowed".

As for the delivery of washed clothes from abroad to prisoners, the Directorate stresses that it has no indications from the Directorate-General for Health to prevent this practice, but “guidelines were given so that, in prisons and educational centres where there are no visits , washed clothes can be left which, after 24 hours, are delivered to the inmates”.

Another measure taken was the ban on transfers of prisoners between establishments, "except for security reasons".

In response to the DGRSP, it states that work activities with external entities are suspended, as well as school, training and leisure activities that involve the gathering of people.

The president of the Union of the Prison Guard Corps said, on Monday, 23 March, to the Lusa agency, that the prisoners maintained their normal routines such as going to the gym, playing ball in the jail yards, or going to the library, and that only classes were suspended.

The DGRSP also states that short-term (precarious) departures are suspended.

Another of the union's criticisms was related to the lack of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for prison guards.

According to the DGRSP, PPE has already been distributed to all clinical services in the chains, noting, however, that as there is no case of covid-19, this equipment should be reserved for when there is a suspected or confirmed case.

The latest statistics from the DGRSP point to the existence of 11,863 detainees on 15 March, spread over about 30 jails.


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