KARACHI: The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Pakistan Red Crescent Society (PRCS) are extending their support to the authorities in Sindh to help strengthen preventative measures against the spread of COVID-19 in prisons.
The distribution includes 52,584 pieces of body soaps, 145 liters of bleach, and 67kg of chlorine, which was delivered to the Central Prison Karachi. The second supply of 60,000 surgical masks, 53 no-touch thermometers, and many N-95 masks will also be delivered soon.
Moreover, information, education, and communication (IEC) material in different languages have also been provided to sensitize detainees, prison staff, and visitors.
Speaking at the distribution ceremony, Inspector General Prisons Sindh, thanked the ICRC and the PRCS for their support. He said that the availability of large amounts of bleach and chlorine would help the cleaning staff maintain proper daily disinfection inside and outside the cells. He added that the department has actively adopted precautionary measures to protect the staff and inmates from the COVID-19 epidemic.
The ICRC Protection Coordinator, Anne Muller, added, “Given the nature and the patterns of the spread of COVID-19 detainees and prison staff are also among those at high risk. For this reason, it remains essential that measures continue to be taken to prevent the spread of the virus in detention places.”
The Chairperson of PRCS-Sindh, Mrs Shahnaz S Hamid, while delivering the items to the IG Prison, appreciated the efforts of IG Prison Nusrat Mangan for his pro-active efforts. “We praise the prison department for having measures to prevent COVID-19 from spreading into the prisons.”
She emphasized that family contact is a vital emotional and psychological support for detainees. COVID 19-related restrictions have made family visits more difficult.
Mrs Hamid also appreciated the jail’s management for starting the facility of connecting the families of the detainees through telephone calls in jails, which is great psychological support for detainees.