Lyttle welcomes review into prison officer support

Alliance MLA Chris Lyttle has welcomed a review into the support available to prison officers, launched by the Justice Minister.

Naomi Long said the review will examine if more can be done to address the issues faced by prison officers. East Belfast MLA Mr Lyttle said he had been working closely with prison officers for some time and it was a chance to repay their service by ensuring their wellbeing.

“There are few roles in society of which we ask more than that of prison officers,” he said.

“Along with many others, prison officers have risen to the challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic. They are key workers who demonstrate their professional qualities by attending work in dangerous circumstances, and we recognise the brave work they carry out on our behalf.

“I have met with serving and former prison officers who are physically and mentally injured as a result of the trauma they have endured on our behalf. They deserve our utmost respect and gratitude and the best, safest and most secure health and well-being provision that we can offer them.

“I welcome the announcement of this review and the work the Justice Minister is undertaking to achieve the aim of protecting the mental health and wellbeing of our prison officers in their performance of the challenging and vital role they play in our society.”