Mental illness in the context of prison must be viewed as a health issue requiring an effective and prompt health intervention, including diversion to appropriate treatment services outside prison. However, people with mental health issues continue to enter the prison system due to a lack of access to appropriate mental health services in the community.
This section includes posts on issues relating to mental health in prison and the wider criminal justice system. If you are looking for general health-related information, click here.
7th December 2019
The case of a homeless man, suffering from brain damage, who has been held on remand for over a year in Mountjoy prison has received widespread national media attention. The case raises a number of systemic issues that IPRT draws attention to here.
23rd July 2019
The Irish Times reports on an increase in the number of assaults on prison staff. Minister Charlie Flanagan calls for greater measures to address the issue of mental health in prison.
18th October 2018
The Oireachtas Joint Committee on Future of Mental Health Care has published its final report, with a core recommendation of increasing the number of acute beds from 22 to 50 per 100,000 over 3 years.
23rd May 2018
In our appearance before the Committee, IPRT made a number of recommendations, including investment and use of prevention and early intervention supports.
14th November 2017
'Mental Illness in Irish Prisoners: Psychiatric Morbidity in Sentenced, Remanded and Newly Committed Prisoners' (Kennedy et al., 2005) was the first systematic and representative survey of mental health in the Irish Prison population.
27th April 2012
IPRT made a detailed Submission to the Cross Sectoral Group on Mental Health and Criminal Justice in April 2012.
17th November 2009
A short document outlining the issue of mental health in Irish prisons, with six key recommendations.
30th April 2001
A report examining the placement of mentally ill prisoners in solitary confinement in Irish prisons, by Dr. Valerie Bresnihan on behalf of IPRT.