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COVID-19 In Prisons: CARICOM IMPACS And the United Kingdom Partnering To Prevent COVID-19 Outbreaks In Prisons

COVID-19 In Prisons: CARICOM IMPACS And the United Kingdom Partnering To Prevent COVID-19 Outbreaks In Prisons

Media Release Courtesy CARICOM IMPACS

In St. Vincent and the Grenadines, there have been no confirmed COVID-19 cases in prisons. However, with an outbreak of COVID-19, the lives of approximately 450 prisoners, 140 prison staff, and the general public will be at risk: potentially placing tremendous strain on the public health system.

On Wednesday, 20 May, 2020 the CARICOM Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (IMPACS) with the generous support of the British High Commission, Port of Spain, through the British Government’s Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF), donated basic sanitation supplies to the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Prison Service to help minimise the risk of infection and transmission of COVID-19 in prisons.

The sanitary supplies including infrared thermometers, as well as cleaning products such as disinfectant, liquid soap, bleach, hand sanitizers and other necessary supplies were handed over to Mr. Brenton Charles, Superintendent of Prisons, St. Vincent and the Grenadines at the Argyle International Airport (AIA). Mr. Steve Moore, Resident British Commissioner, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Lt. Col. Michael Jones, Executive Director (Ag), CARICOM IMPACS were at the AIA to witness the delivery.

The supplies provided are in accordance with guidelines issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) for the prevention and control of the pandemic in prisons (WHO 2020). CARICOM IMPACS’ and the United Kingdom’s efforts to prevent COVID-19 infections in prisons will continue next week with donations of similar basic sanitation supplies to eleven (11) other CARICOM Member States.

CARICOM IMPACS has also partnered with the Regional Security System (RSS), which continues to play a key role in providing airlift and logistical support for the distribution of supplies to some Member States.

The donation of these supplies will encourage and assist with the accelerated adoption of WHO guidelines for prisons and other places of detention.

 

About the CARICOM Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (IMPACS):
CARICOM IMPACS is the coordinating and implementation arm of the region’s multilateral crime and security management architecture, specifically designed to administer a collective response to the crime and security priorities of its Member States. Its members comprise 15 CARICOM Member States and five Associate States.

IMPACS comprises the Headquarters which is in Trinidad and Tobago and two sub-Agencies, the Joint Regional Communications Centre (JRCC) and the Regional Intelligence Fusion Centre (RIFC). The Agency is responsible for the coordination of the Standing Committee of Correctional Services and Prisons in CARICOM.

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The Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) is an International Organisation dedicated to economic harmonisation and integration, protection of human and legal rights, and the encouragement of good governance among independent and non-independent countries in the Eastern Caribbean. The OECS came into being on June 18th 1981, when seven Eastern Caribbean countries signed a treaty agreeing to cooperate with each other while promoting unity and solidarity among its Members. The Treaty became known as the Treaty of Basseterre, so named in honour of the capital city of St. Kitts and Nevis where it was signed. The OECS today, currently has eleven members, spread across the Eastern Caribbean comprising Antigua and Barbuda, Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, St Vincent and The Grenadines, British Virgin Islands, Anguilla, Martinique and Guadeloupe. 

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