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Introduction: Irish Prison Service are working on a research project. The topic is internal prison inspection mechanisms i.e. forms of inspection and audit which are run by the prison service or the Ministry/Department of Justice.
Yes. Our internal inspections are run by a specific unit at the Head Office. This unit conducts inspections at the local level at prisons and probation offices. Inspections includes regular visits to all our local units. In addition to this the Head Office also includes an Audit Unit, investigating how the Prison and probation Authority are run in more general terms.If yes, what is its mandate?
The internal inspections has the mandate to visit all the local units, to take part of the local work, to leave judgement of how the work is being done and to suggest ways of improvements, if needed.How is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
The inspection-unit is organised with one director and three frontrunners. When conducting inspections, required experts are temporarily hired from other parts of the Head Office (or from local or regional level), forming an inspectionteam, led by a frontrunner. Every inspection are typically ongoing for 3-4 days, depending the size of the unit being inspected.What do such inspections examine?
Detailed topics for inspection are decided on a yearly basis by the director general, applying to all the units for the upcoming year. Topics examined concerns security-, law-, healthcare-, environment-, human resources-, treatment-, relapse prevention, and administration.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
No, the inspection-unit have no power to require change itself. However is the reports from the inspections handed over to responsible directors at the head office, with the power to require change or improvements.
Yes, our system has an Inspection Service, integrated into the organisational structure of the Directorate General of Prison Services, with organic and functional dependence of the director general.If yes, what is its mandate?
- Ensure the proper implementation of the guidelines and objectives set by the Directorate General of Prisons, especially for the strict respect of the rights of inmates. - Apply disciplinary rules to the staff assigned to prisons. - Any other similar function entrusted by superiorsHow is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
Currently Inspection Service is provided by a head of service and four inspectors under their dependence. Inspectors are career civil servants with necessary experience in the field of penal procedure and are appointed by free designation.What do such inspections examine?
- The Inspectorate Service examines the activity and operation of prisons by management areas. Specifically, those allowing the essential functioning and proper performance of the penitentiary function: the management level, the field of rehabilitation and the internal regime services (security). - They are inspected and assessed in concrete way specific areas of the prison service according to a criterion of opportunity. - There is a continuously monitoring by a permanent inspectorate service (24 hrs.) of incidents that occur in prisons. - They are immediately investigated the incidents which may arise disciplinary responsibility of prison staff.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
In the case of flagrant violation of current regulations inspectors have the ability to require immediate correction of dysfunctions, reporting immediately to the CEO and the corresponding operating unit of the Directorate General. In all other cases the inspectors can propose corrective measures and recommendations for the improvement of services.
The prison is subject to inspections through a number of visits, out of which that of the Director of Judicial Services and several competent judicial authorities.If yes, what is its mandate?
Not applicable.How is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
The prison is visited at least once per year by the Director of Judicial Services, by examining magistrates, the Juvenile Court judge, as well as by the General Prosecutor.What do such inspections examine?
The aforementioned authorities visit the whole of the detention area, can talk with the detainees and inspect the regulatory records.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
The possible observations raised by the judicial authorities are transmitted to the Director of Judicial Services for his information. Moreover, an office of the penitentiary administration is established and can be consulted on all questions regarding the organisation and operation of the establishment.
Criminal Sanctions Agency has own internal audit unit, that takes care of prison audits.If yes, what is its mandate?
Obligation to carry out prison inspections comes from agreements by United Nations and the Council of European union; minimum prison rules, rules of community services. In addition, Internal Audit unit has a Internal Audit Charter which is approved by Director General.How is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
Internal audit unit consists of Chief Audit Executive, Senior inspector and secretary. In prison audits and larger scale audits, other specialists of Criminal Sanctions agency are used.What do such inspections examine?
For example security (fysical and dynamic), treatment of prisoners, prison premises, personnel recruitment, personnel and financial administration, purchases.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
No, they only can give strong recommendations.
The Minister of Justice is responsible for the prison system. There is a general inspection agency that performs inspections for the Ministry of Justice as a whole. Furthermore the Custodial Institutions Agency has it’s own Internal Audit Department. This department performs audits regarding management control, finance and safety, security & housing.If yes, what is its mandate?
The Internal Audit Department has it’s own charter which defines it’s roles, responsibilities and mandate with regard to performing the audits. When corrective actions or changes are needed, the department informs the responsible director to initiate them. The internal audit department has no mandate regarding the initiation of (corrective) actions, this is the responsibility of management.How is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
The internal audit department is a staff organization. It reports to the director of Audit & Concern control. There is also an Audit committee which meets 4 times a year to discuss relevant issues. The Principal Director of the agency is part of this committee. The internal auditors are appointed in the same way as regular employees.What do such inspections examine?
The audits cover a wide variety of subjects. Generally there are 3 types of audits: - General audit regarding management control issues (IT, Finance, Control, Project management, Personnel, operational processen, policies etc); - Financial audits regarding financial closing; - Safety, Security & Housing.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
When corrective actions or changes are needed, the department informs the responsible director to initiate them. The internal audit department has no mandate regarding the initiation of (corrective) actions, this is the responsibility of management. When audits are completed the organization does monitor if recommendations are followed-up. The control department is responisble for monitoring the progress.
The Prison Service runs two elements of integrated audit. NOMS has a programme of audits (Standards Audits) undertaken by a team operational staff, which review levels of compliance against operational standards set by NOMS within individual establishments. MoJ Internal Audit also completes a risk based annual programme of work, which provides the NOMS Accounting Officer (CEO) with an evidenced based annual opinion on the adequacy of control, risk management and governance across the Organisation. This will include audits across operational, management and financial systems within prisons.If yes, what is its mandate?
Standards Audit is carried out on behalf of and reports to the Chief Operating Officer. The work of the unit is Directed by the COO. Internal Audit is undertaken in line with the requirements of Managing Public Money and in accordance with the Public Sector Internal Audit (professional) Standards. The work of Internal Audit is endorsed by and reported to the Audit and Risk Assurance Committee (comprising three Non-Executive Directors of the NOMS Board – one of whom is Chair).How is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
To ensure that the Standards Audit team holds sufficiently recent operational experience, the Team is comprised of serving operational prison staff seconded (following an expression of interest) from prisons for a period of 2-3 years. Once the secondment period finishes, staff return to operational duties within prisons. Internal Audit is comprised of a team of full time professionally qualified and part qualified (studying to full qualification) staff. All staff hold a CCAB or Institute of Internal Auditor professional qualification. Staff are recruited into post following Central Government recruitment policies.What do such inspections examine?
Standards Audit reviews cover Prison Service Instructions and specific coverage is at the discretion of the COO according to organisational priorities, which include Instructions relating to Security (covered under the National Security Framework) and Suicide and Self-Harm. Internal Audits may cover any operational, management and financial system across the organisation, which are audited against an annual assessment of audit need, which is based on the key risks the organisation is facing.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
Neither Internal Audit or Standards have any executive powers to implement change. Standards Audit make recommendations against poor compliance, which are designed to address weaknesses in compliance within individual prisons. Recommendations may also result in changes in policy, where there are key or common issues of non-compliance with instructions and management deem it appropriate to alter policy/instructions. Internal Audit make recommendations, which are designed to address weaknesses in control, risk management and governance across the Organisation and can result in changes to policies, operational approach and strategic priorities.
Yes. Section 7 of the Prisons (Scotland) Act 1989 (as amended by the Scotland Act 1998) provides the statutory basis for Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons in Scotland. HMIP operates independently and impartially from the Scottish Prison Service. HM Chief Inspector of Prisons is responsible for ensuring that a systematic programme of inspection is carried out and that findings are reported to the Cabinet Secretary for Justice. The Chief Inspector shall in particular report on the treatment of prisoners and conditions in prisons. The Chief Inspector is directly accountable to the Scottish Ministers, which guarantees independence of inspection, review and reporting.If yes, what is its mandate?
HM Chief Inspector conducts regular inspections of individual prison establishments and legalised police cells in Scotland. The scope, focus and content of any inspection will be decided by HMCIP, taking into consideration the particular circumstances relating to any given establishment at the time of inspection. It is expected that any inspection and subsequent report will cover: • physical conditions prevailing in an establishment; • treatment of prisoners; • facilities, services and opportunities available to address offending behaviour and the accessibility of these; • preparations in place for returning prisoners to the community; • any other relevant matter as the Cabinet Secretary for Justice may direct or HMCIP may choose. HMCIP submits an Annual Report to the Cabinet Secretary for Justice which is laid before Parliament and published.How is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
HMCIP receives professional support from two senior SPS governors seconded to HMIP. Business, secretarial and administrative support is also provided by the Scottish Government to facilitate the inspection programme. HMCIP may recruit specialist inspection advice from other sources including SPS, other Prison Services, other Inspectorates, and specialist organisations in the fields of criminal justice, health, education and social work. The principal concern of the Chief Inspector is the regular and rigorous inspection of individual establishments within the Scottish penal estate. While HMCIP sets his own agenda for any inspection, it is expected that this will reflect the prisoner population, operational practice and regime in the establishment concerned, as well as reflecting Service-wide initiatives. Wherever possible HMCIP should draw upon and use standardised indicators and management information measures available from individual prisons and from SPS Headquarters, while retaining the right to have access to any ad hoc data as may be necessary to complete an inspection.What do such inspections examine?
See above Q2 The general principles of inspection may be summarised as follows: • in carrying out inspections and in preparing reports, HMCIP will be independent of political influence, the Scottish Government, the Scottish Prison Service and Governors-in-Charge of establishments; • inspections and the reports resulting from them will be balanced, fair and open; • in inspecting and reporting upon the treatment of prisoners and the conditions within prisons, inspections will make assessments against standards which have been clearly defined; • strategic and relevant documentation will be provided by Governors-in-Charge and SPS Headquarters to HMCIP on request; • confidential information supplied will be treated as such; • each inspection should be responsive to an establishment’s individual circumstances; • HMCIP will attempt to keep disruption to normal regime activities to a minimum; • the inspection team will give clear oral feedback to senior management; • a report to the Cabinet for Justice will be produced which will identify main points for action by the individual establishment and/or SPS, and highlight areas of good practice.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
HMCIP inspection reports can: • highlight areas of Good Practice; • make Recommendations; and • outline Action Points requiring attention.
In Enforcement of Criminal Sanctions Act in Art. 202 tasks of Head Office inside the Prison Administration of Republic of Slovenia are specified. One of the tasks of Prison Administration is to perform internal supervision above all areas of work in Prison facilities and Correctional home. We do not have permanent internal prison inspection as known in some countries. Art. 212 of the Enforcement of Criminal Sanctions Act stats also “(1) Supervision of the legality of the treatment of convicts shall be exercised by the ministry responsible for justice and the president of the district court in whose territory a prison or its department is located. An authorised official from the ministry responsible for justice or the president of the district court shall, at the request of convicts and without the presence of prison staff, interview convicts about the treatment they are receiving and about the exercise of their rights. (2) If the ministry responsible for justice or the president of the district court referred to in the preceding paragraph establishes in the course of supervision that convicts’ rights have been violated, they shall take all measures necessary to ensure convicts’ rights. (3) In accordance with the Human Rights Ombudsman Act and international legal acts, the Human Rights Ombudsman and authorised bodies responsible for the protection of human rights and the prevention of torture, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment, shall also be enabled to exercise supervision referred to in the first paragraph of this article. (4) Supervision of the education of convicts in prisons shall be exercised by the ministry responsible for education. (5) Expert supervision and administrative supervision of the provision of health care services in the prison shall be exercised in accordance with the law governing health care services.”If yes, what is its mandate?
Each inspection is formulated or nominated with concretely defined purpose and is in operation until the task is complete.How is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
Our mode and subject of inspection is described as such in the Articles of the Enforcement of Criminal Sanctions Act.What do such inspections examine?
Part of inspections could be performed through interviews with convicts about the treatment they are receiving and about the exercise of their rights. Authorised bodies responsible for the protection of human rights and the prevention of torture, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment are enabled to exercise inspection. Supervisions of the education of convicts and health care services are also conducted.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
One of the purposes of the inspection is also to suggest changes in some fields of penal enforcement, so they have also an obligation to require changes in policy.
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The Norwegian Correctional Service is organised on three levels; central, regional and local. The Directorate for Norwegian Correctional Service (central level) is responsible for the professional and administrative management of the whole service, but in terms of supervision the inspectional are limited to the regional offices. The regional offices supervise the professional and administrative leadership in the prisons and probation offices. Each of the regions within the services is also attached to a supervisory board consistent of external persons with no professional attachment to the correctional service. Other official supervisionary bodies in areas such as health, safety, environment, work conditions, medical treatment and more, examines the conditions and facilities in the prisons and probation offices as the do outside the prison.If yes, what is its mandate?
The regional supervisory boards: Pursuant to further detailed rules, the 5 - five - regional supervisory boards shall exercise supervision over prisons and probation offices and over the treatment of convicted persons and prisoners.How is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
The Norwegian Ministry of Justice and Police appoints the head and deputy head of the supervisory board and at least two of its members together with deputy members. The appointment lasts for two years.What do such inspections examine?
The members of the supervisory boards are entitled to talk to convicted persons and prisoners, if the persons or prisoners themselves asks for it, and without the presence of prison staff. They may also inspect the prison’s/probation office's areas and facilities, work and educational areas, internal routines and so on.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
If the inmate or convicted person agrees, the members of the supervisory board are entitled to take part in meetings concerning convicted persons and prisoners. They may also demand to inspect the specific case documents if the convicted person or prisoner concerned consents thereto. The supervisory board may forward their views on a specific case to the local prison governor, but does not have the power to change how the case or situation was handled. If there is a difference of opinion between the supervisory board and the local prison governor, the supervisory board may present the case to the superior administrative level (the regional office) Each year the regional supervisory boards provides an annual rapport of their activities and handled cases to the Directorate for the correctional service. Outside the correctional service, there is no automatic control system in place with the authority to quash decisions; convicted persons themselves have to file an application before the ordinary civil courts for revocation.
Yes, it has. The Ministry of Justice shall exercise supervisory control over prisons, inter alia supervisory inspections.If yes, what is its mandate?
The purpose of supervisory inspection is to detect and correct and thereafter prevent mistakes in the work and work organisation of the prisons. Prisons Department of Ministry of Justice shall verify the legality of the actions and the expedience of operations organisation as well as proper formalization of operations in prison. The inspector has a right to enter everywhere in the facility of prison and to carry out these surveys; to interview prison employees; to interview prisoners and detainees; to request documents, to check them and make copies; to demand written and oral explanations.How is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
Ordinary supervisory inspection has to take place at least once in three years. Ordinary supervisory inspections are based on proposals of Divisions of Prisons Department of Ministry of Justice and these are planned in the working plan of Ministry of Justice. Extraordinary supervisory inspections take place according to the directive of Minister of Justice. Officials and employees in the prison service and other experts may be involved in the supervisory inspection. The head of supervisory inspection is appointed in the directive of Minister of Justice.What do such inspections examine?
Supervisory inspections examine the operation of prison structural unit, processes carried out in prison, legality of execution of a particular act. The subjects of exercised supervisory inspections are for example: guiding new employees, evaluation of prison officers, placement of prisoners to prison, electronic monitoring and supervision, disciplinary proceedings et cetera.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
At the end of every supervisory inspection the final report is compiled and confirmed by the Minister of Justice. If disadvantages have discovered the prescriptions will be submitted in the final report. Director of Prison is responsible for the implementation of prescriptions.
The Latvian Prison Administration (hereinafter – Administration) does not have a separate internal inspection for running checks/inspections in places of imprisonment.If yes, what is its mandate?
The work of places of imprisonment is controlled by the staff of Administration central board who carries out complex inspections as well as extraordinary inspections.How is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
The complex inspections of places of imprisonment are carried out in accordance with the schedule approved by the Director General of the Administration. The complex inspections are carried out every two years. The order of the Director General has approved “The list of issues to be inspected during the complex inspection”. For every complex inspection of a place of imprisonment Director General issues an order with a list of commission members to carry out the complex inspection. The commission summarizes and evaluates the results of the inspection, and Director General approves these findings with an order. The extraordinary inspections of places of imprisonment are carried out by the staff of the central board of the Administration within their competencies, according with previous instructions of the Director General. The results of the inspection are put forward as a notice. The complex inspections and extraordinary inspections of places of imprisonment are carried out in accordance with Latvian laws, regulations of the Cabinet of Ministers, orders of the Ministry of Justice, orders of the Administration, and regulations approved by the Director General of the Administration that regulate the work of the Administration.What do such inspections examine?
During a complex inspection of a place of imprisonment all work of the structural unit is being inspected, namely: inmate guard, monitoring, rehabilitation, health care and provision as well as the work of place of imprisonment in the fields of security, administration, juridical and economy. During an extraordinary inspection of a place of imprisonment all work regarding the completion of separate tasks set by the Administration, suggestions or shortcomings noted in the complex inspection reports/orders, and other work issues is inspected.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
The Administration have the right to submit to the Ministry of Justice suggestions regarding amendments to the current normative acts, which regulates the work of the Administration. In addition, several officers of the Administration are also a part of several work groups of the Ministry of Justice and of the Ministry of Interior that are constantly working with developing normative regulations.
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At the Headquarters of the Italian Department of Penitentiary Administration the Office for Inspections and Control Activities is established, which is in charge of monitoring many situations in the prisons, as well as of performing internal inspections activities in the prisons, on its own initiative, or upon order and delegation by the Head of Department.If yes, what is its mandate?
The inspection visits are one of the main tools through which the Department of Penitentiary administration can check, on the one hand, the functioning of the prisons, and on the other hand, can take necessary measures for one single establishment or for the penitentiary system as a whole. In particular, there are three types of visits: a) Common inspections: one prison is chosen on the grounds of a number of criteria (e.g.: number of incidents, internal or external reports) and the functioning of all the prison sector is checked; b) Extraordinary inspections: assessment activities carried out after a period of time from the last common or extraordinary inspection visit, in order to ascertain whether the problems found in one prison are addressed and possibly solves.How is it organised, who works as an inspector and how are they appointed?
The inspections and assessment activities can be led and coordinated: a) Personally by the Director of the Office for Inspections; b) By one Senior Executive or one Executive of the Penitentiary Administration; c) By one managing officer (this case concern extraordinary activities). During the activities, the person in charge can avail him/herself of the staff on duty at the Inspections Office and/or of staff on duty at other structures of the Penitentiary Administration at local and central level. In particular, when it comes to analysing the situations of some sectors of the prisons, the inspection is carried out by a teamwork, with well experienced staff, specialised in sectors analysis (e.g. one educator for the pedagogic sector, one Chief Constable of Penitentiary Police for the security sector, and so on). Such staff is appointed by the Head of Department upon proposal of the Director of the Office of Inspections. From an organisational point of view, the Director of the Office for Inspections drafts a preliminary note which analyses the prison under inspection in order to provide the assessment team with a general framework of the structure and of the problems found, pointing out the aspects which have to be analysed in depth. The results of such deeper analysis, summarised in a final report, shall allow to highlight the positive and negative aspects of the establishment and in particular the reasons of the problems arisen. The final reports is sent to the Head of the Department, along with a note of the Director of the Office for Inspections, in order to enable the top manager of the Administration to make the necessary decisions and give the opportune orders to the structures competent to solve the problems found during the inspections (that is first of all the same Governor of the prison inspected, and secondly the competent Regional Directorate of the Penitentiary and/or the HQ structures possibly involved).What do such inspections examine?
The common inspection activity mainly concerns the various sectors of the prison, and, within each single sector, it includes: inter-personal relations; relations with Trade Unions and with other Administrations; planning of objectives at short-, mid- and long-term; contents and effectiveness of the actions of administrative and accountant management. The extraordinary inspection activity, carried out on the occasion of a particular incident, aims at analysing in depth the incident and the relevant reasons as well as at proposing actions to be carried out to prevent a similar incident to occur again. The assessment activity is aimed at verifying whether, after a certain period of time, the problem found in one prison as a consequence of an inspection have been addressed and possibly solved.Do the inspectors have the power to require changes in policy, or how do they otherwise achieve change?
When the problems found can directly be solved by the prison governor of the establishment visited, the President of the Inspection Committee give specific orders to the Governor him/herself. Said President also sends the same orders to the Office for Inspections, for their information, as well as to the competent Regional Directorate, in order for the latter to check the activity of the prison Governor relevant to the orders received, as well as to provide the Governor with the necessary technical and administrative support. The prison Governor sends his/her replies to the President of the Inspection Committee, and to the Office for Inspection for Information. The President of the Inspection Committee has the task to verify that the prison Governor correctly complies the orders given, until they are fully respected and carried out. When the problems found in one prison inspection fall outside the direct competence of the prison Governor, since they involve higher structures of the Penitentiary Administration, they are recorded in the final report and they are the object of an order given by the Head of Department to the Regional Directorate and/or to one or more Headquarters structures, for the adoption of the consequent measures.