Fine Gael Cork South Central Deputy, Jerry Buttimer, has welcomed comments from the Minister for Justice and Equality, Alan Shatter, that he was considering the construction of a new prison for Cork on the car park site adjacent to the existing facility.
“This is a positive announcement by the Minister. For many years Cork Prison has suffered from problems of overcrowding and the lack of in-cell sanitation. The Minister, having seen these problems first hand, is now taking steps to eliminate the difficulties and improve the criminal justice infrastructure in Cork.
“A Cork specific strategy which comprises building a new prison and the enhancement of sentence management has been developed. Both elements will combine to relieve overcrowding and improve the management of offenders while in custody and when released. This integrated strategy will improve the education and rehabilitation of offenders enhancing public safety.
“The proposals to build a new prison on the car park of the existing facility are cost effective and recognise the current economic climate. While a final decision is dependent on detailed plans and costs, I would encourage the Minister to proceed with these proposals as they will eliminate some of the long-standing problems faced by Cork Prison, creating valuable jobs during the construction phase of the new prison in the process.”