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Lyttle welcomes commitment by Justice Minister to increase support for prison staff

Alliance MLA Chris Lyttle has welcomed a commitment from the Justice Minister to increase support for serving and former prison staff.

Publishing two reports into helping the frontline staff, Minister Naomi Long said she agreed with the dozen recommendations, also providing an action plan with timescales for implementation. Mr Lyttle, who has worked closely with a number of prison officers to advocate for support over the past number of years, said it was a significant step forward.

“Prison officers, both serving and former, deserve the best health and wellbeing support possible, given the vital frontline role they play in our society,” he said.

“I thank the Minister for committing to this review and now delivering on it, to help enhance the support services prison officers need and deserve. It is a significant step forward by the Alliance Justice Minister to giving the assistance officers require.

“It is particularly welcome to see the commitment to extend funded access for former prison officers to PRRT rehabilitation and retraining support. I welcome the October 2021 target for delivery of this service and trust the Executive support to fund this vital provision will be forthcoming.”