309 prison officers trained in first half of 2023, 250 more to be trained

In keeping with government’s commitment to ensuring the Guyana Prison Service is staffed with qualified and competent officers, 309 ranks have graduated after completing training in several courses in the first half of 2023.

The training is also geared towards promoting greater efficiency in the prison system.

According to a release from the Prison Service, ranks were trained by internal and external facilitators. They completed almost 50 courses including Prison Management, Human Rights and Supervisory Management.

Acting Deputy Director of Prisons and Head of the Staff Training Department, Kevin Pilgrim noted that the training is integral as it will equip prison personnel with knowledge and skills to efficiently perform their duties while also respecting the rights of inmates.

He said, “Based on the current budgetary allocations for training, same has been utilised to ensure that staff are exposed to not only institutional training but at the technical level so that they can offer more support and guidance to prisoners.”

Director of Prisons, Nicklon Elliot added that the various training programmes foster several beneficial skills and behaviours.

“It promotes the ability to critically analyse arising and existing problems and proactively find creative solutions. It advocates self-confidence, taking responsibility, speaking clearly and effectively, working in a team, critically assessing information, and sharing ideas in an engaging and persuasive manner,” the Prison Director stated.

Meanwhile, Head of the Prison Service Training Board, Tracy Shamshudeen relayed that the board is working simultaneously with the Prison Directorate, where management structures are being devised to continuously encourage officers to capitalise on training opportunities available locally, regionally or internationally.

An additional 250 ranks have been identified for training in the second half of this year.

From the $5.5 billion earmarked for the Prison Service in 2023, funds have been set aside for prison management training for over 400 personnel.