Opportunity for TDs to Revise Flawed Prison Plans Must be Seized, says Jesuit Centre

 News Release

 

Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice

 

 27 May 2008

 

A Motion that will be introduced to the Dail today ( Tuesday 27 May 2008) provides a significant opportunity for TDs  to influence the shape of the country’s largest ever prison development, the Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice has said. In an appeal to Orieachtas members, the Centre called on them to radically revise what it sees as the seriously flawed plans for Thornton Hall Prison, which is to replace the Mountjoy Prison complex.


While the Motion refers to a whole range issues relating to the new prison, including road access, water supply, preservation of trees and hedgerows on the site, it makes no mention of any element affecting the conditions under which the prisoners to be held there will be detained, according to the Centre.

Posted in Criminality, Prisons and Justice News

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Leading British expert on women in prison expresses dismay at direction of Irish policy

News Release

 

Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice


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Leading British expert on women in prison speaking at Jesuit Seminar expresses dismay at direction of Irish policy

21 May 2008

Embargoed until 6.00 p.m. Thursday, 22 May 2008


A leading expert on women in prison has expressed dismay at the direction of Irish penal policy which will see a doubling in the number of prison places for women in coming years. Baroness Jean Corston, former Labour MP for Bristol and a life peer, said at a seminar in Dublin, “My essential message is that I would be very sad to see the Irish Government implementing the kind of policy which has failed in the UK and which we are now trying to unscramble.”

Posted in Criminality, Prisons and Justice News

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Women in Prison: the Need for a Critical Review

Women in Prison: the Need for a Critical Review

Public Seminar hosted by the Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice

 

Thursday 22 May 2008 5:00 to 7:30pm
Law Library, Distillery Building,
145 - 151 Church Street, Dublin 7

 

The Irish Government is planning to build two new prisons for women, thereby doubling the current capacity.

Should we not instead look to limiting the number of women coming into prison and exploring the expansion of non-custodial alternatives?

Is it now time for a national review of the use of imprisonment for women in Ireland?

pdf Women in Prison Brochure

Posted in Criminality, Prisons and Justice News

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‘Churches must work for Social Revolution’, says Jesuit Priest in New Book

Jesuit priest and leading social justice campaigner, Fr Peter McVerry, has called on the Christian churches to look afresh at the social implications of the life and message of Jesus. Speaking at the launch of his new book, Jesus: Social Revolutionary?, Fr McVerry said:

Challenging the Christian churches to re-examine their priorities he said:

“For me, the life and work of Jesus should mean that a huge commitment to social justice should be at the heart of all the Christian churches preach and do. However, it appears to me that the Churches’ emphasis on personal conversion fails to go beyond the personal, to emphasise the radical economic, social and political consequences of such conversion.”

Posted in Church Structural Renewal News

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Co-Locating Central Mental Hospital with Thornton Hall Prison Less Enlightened than the Victorians

News Release

 

 JCFJ

 

6 April, 2008

 

There is no possible therapeutic reason to relocate the Central Mental Hospital from Dundrum to a site adjoining the new Thornton Hall prison complex, says the Central Mental Hospital Carers Group, a voluntary group of relatives and carers of patients in the hospital.

Patients not Prisoners

Writing in the April 2008 issue of Working Notes, the journal of the Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice, the Carers Group says it must not be forgotten that people detained in the Central Mental Hospital ‘are patients, not prisoners’: it is because of their mental illness they have come into the criminal justice system.

The Group notes that when the Central Mental Hospital was proposed 150 years ago, the authorities of the time rejected the idea of locating it beside a prison: “It is ironic that the Victorians could make such an enlightened decision yet modern Irish politicians can decide to co-locate the proposed new hospital with new prison facilities.” Pointing out that moving the hospital to the Thornton Hall site will “inevitably and irreversibly associate its patients with criminality”, the Carers Group says: “This surely is against the ethos of mental health care in any civilised society.”

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