The National Preventive Mechanism Publishes a Report on a Visit to the Penitentiary Establishment N3

As a result of the visit of the National Preventive Mechanism to the Penitentiary establishment N3, it was determined that numerous problems exist in the establishment. Namely, there is ventilation and water supply problems in the establishment, prisoners in some cells do not have TV and radio sets, no rehabilitation operates in the prison and no cultural or sport activities were organized, and the prison has experiences goods shortage. And prisoners that were transferred from Eastern Georgia have problems with maintaining communication with families and their lawyers.

The monitoring group found out that several convicts that were transferred from Eastern Georgia to the penitentiary establishment N3 were refusing to attend court hearing because of long distance to the court house. The monitoring group carried out examination of vehicles used for transferring prisoners. The vehicles that are used to transfer convicts are Gaz, Mercedes, Ford and Suzuki vehicles. Conditions in Gaz, Mercedes and Ford vehicles are unsatisfactory and travelling in this transport creates discomfort for prisoners. Along with many other problems there is no ventilation in cars, space in the car is very small and chairs have a firm surface that causes to physical pain during a long journey.

As a result of the monitoring it was also revealed that the number of disciplinary responsibilites of prisoners in September-October months has increased significantly. In the majority of cases placement in a solitary cell is used as a method of disciplinary penalty. At the assessment of the National Preventive mechanism, conditions in the solitary cell violate human dignity. There is no functioning ventilation in a solitary cell; also there exists a problem of water supply and thus maintenance of sanitary-hygiene conditions because of which there is unbearable smell in the cell. Prisoners are not given mattresses and bedding so they have to sleep directly n the bed. Electronic surveillance of prisoners is undertaken in 16 cells. The administration of the establishment uses as they call it “Anti-vandal” cell for a prisoner in case of mental disorder, self-harm and aggressive behavior.

The monitoring revealed that there are problems connected to provision of medical service, also independence and competence of the medical staff in the establishment. The medical staff does not carry out comprehensive documenting of damages seen on the body of prisoners or their causes. In most cases, confidentiality of medical examination is violated.

At the assessment of the National Preventive Mechanism, all the above has negative effect on health and wellbeing of prisoners placed in the penitentiary establishment N3 and thus the ministry of Corrections should take every step to eliminate all the above problems.

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