Press Release

Ministry of Health & Social Development
His Majesty’s Prison
Release Date:
Friday, 16 February 2024 - 3:18pm

The Ministry of Health and Social Development recently held training for members of the Prison Visiting Committee to enhance their knowledge of their roles in helping to protect inmates at His Majesty's Prison.

Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Social Development Miss Tasha Bertie in remarks at the training session, said an essential part of any committee member's service is increasing their knowledge based on the government structure and procedures that are expected to guide their operation and assist in the overall delivery of their mandate.

Miss Bertie said, "As a ministry, we are expecting to use different mediums to ensure that we provide the requisite information and guidance that will support our committee's ability to deliver their mandate in a conducive, transparent and efficient way. Essentially, providing them with the appropriate training and guidance on how they are expected to operate and support the delivery of their mandate."

The session was facilitated by the Department of Human Resources and the Attorney General’s Chambers. Crown Counsel Miss Ann-Marie A. Coombs gave a detailed presentation to members of the committee on their duties related to the Prison Act 1998, the Prison Rules 1999, and the Prison Ordinance 2000.

Meanwhile, the Deputy Director for the Department of Human Resources, Miss Kaisa Penn advised the committee on their duties related to human resources while she also acknowledged the unique staffing challenges His Majesty's Prison faces and the role of the Prison Visiting Committee.

The Prison Visiting Committee is tasked with visiting the prison and provide hearing sessions for any complaints made by prisoners. The members are also tasked with inspecting the quality of the prison accommodation, food, facilities and services available to the prisoners, as well as the treatment of prisoners by staff.

The rights and authority of the committee extend to any matter it believes may infringe on the rights of inmates. Committee members are expected to report urgent matters to the Governor through the necessary channels. Members are also inclined to make recommendations to the Superintendent of Prisons in respect to any investigations presented.

The Ministry of Health and Social Development remains committed to improving the health and social well-being of the people of the Virgin Islands.






Fitsroy Randall

Information Officer I
Ministry of Health and Social Development
Vornicia's House of Commerce, Long Bush
Tortola, British Virgin Islands
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