Statement of concern: NSW not facilitating prison inspections by UN Committee

A statement of concern from the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC), Community Legal Centres NSW, Human Rights Law Centre (HRLC), Amnesty International Australia, Aboriginal Legal Service (NSW/ACT), First People’s Disability Network Australia (FPDNA) and Change the Record

We are concerned about reports that the NSW Government is refusing to allow the visiting United Nations Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment to access NSW prisons and youth detention centres.

The UN Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture is visiting Australia as part of Australia’s commitment to the Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.

We encourage the NSW Government to cooperate with the UN Subcommittee in line with Australia’s commitment to the Protocol. NSW is reportedly the only State or Territory not cooperatively facilitating inspections of its prisons by the UN Subcommittee. 

Our clients have been subjected to solitary confinement in circumstances that have impacted upon their mental health, and have been denied access to medical care in NSW’s youth detention centres and prisons. The UN Subcommittee must be provided access to these places of detention to be able to assess the conditions and treatment of prisoners. 

We call on the NSW Government to fully cooperate with the UN OPCAT delegation. 

 

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Media contact:

PIAC Media and Communications Manager, Danielle Buhagiar: 0478 739 280.

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