Irish Penal Reform Trust

Public Consultation on the Review of Prison Rules

18th August 2021

The Irish Prison Service has announced that it is carrying out a full review of the 2007 Prison Rules. Closing date for submissions is 5pm on 30th September 2021.

The current Prison Rules were enacted in May 2007. The Prison Rules set out the rules and regulations with regard to the various conditions in prisons in Ireland, including: admission, registration, accommodation, visiting rights, health, discipline, education, etc. They include specific rules on the role of the Prison Governor, the role of Prison Officers and the operation of regimes and services within prisons on a daily basis.

In July 2020 an updated version of the European Prison Rules was published by the Council of Europe. In reviewing the Prison Rules now, the Irish Prison Service wishes to take account of the updated European Prison Rules and also consider changes within the Irish Prison Service, the prison system and also changes that have occurred within the wider criminal justice system over the past 14 years.

IPRT hosted a Law Seminar earlier this year where we were joined by esteemed speakers to examine the role of the Irish Prison Rules in vindicating prisoners’ rights, the process by which the Rules are amended and the opportunities for strengthening the protection they offer to prisoners. More info here.

Interested parties are being called to submit their views to the consultation via email. IPRT will be advocating to ensure that people in prison are consulted meaningfully on the review and looks forward to hearing updates from the Irish Prison Service on same.


For more information, visit the Department of Justice website here.

Respect for rights in the penal system with prison as a last resort.

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