Age-old New Amsterdam Prison to be reconstructed
The New Amsterdam Prison
The New Amsterdam Prison

LATER this year, the New Amsterdam Prison will undergo a multi-billion-dollar reconstruction to accommodate prisoners from Regions Five and Six.

This announcement was made by Works Officer of the Guyana Prison Service (GPS), Kurt Joseph, during his address at Thursday’s opening of the Annual Guyana Prison Service’s Senior Officers’ Conference.

Earlier this year, it was announced that over $2 billion will be allocated to the GPS for the provision of prisons and the payment of retention.

In addition to the New Amsterdam Prison, the Mazaruni and Lusignan Prisons will also undergo significant building upgrades. Work has already started at the Lusignan facility.

Home Affairs Minister, Robeson Benn and other officials who spoke at the conference, emphasised the importance of upholding prisoners’ human rights even as government strives to create a model jail system.

Minister Benn reiterated that he did not want those individuals to be subjected to physical or emotional abuse, pointing out that the prisoners have the same human rights as anyone else.

Meanwhile, according to the Director of Prisons (ag), Nicklon Elliot, over 1,400 prisoners received training in literacy, numeracy, and other subjects in 2022.

Prisoners also received training in behavioural modification, stress and anger management, conflict resolution and other programmes.

Additionally, the Fresh Start Initiative was started, and many prisoners have already benefitted from it.

Ten prisoners were given tools and equipment to assist them to earn a living in fields such as landscaping, carpentry, joinery, welding, and cosmetology.

The three-day conference was hosted under the theme, “Promoting Rehabilitation and Societal Reintegration of the Inmates”.


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