PLS undertakes law reform projects and provides submissions on issues that impact people who are vulnerable in prison. We maintain a strategic focus on the use of solitary confinement due to our concerns about the harm this practice causes to individuals and society as a whole.
This journal article discusses the legal implications of the Queensland Human Rights Act for COVID-related responses in correctional settings, and particularly the use of medical isolation.
This research report is the result of a two year collaboration between PLS and The University of Queensland. It contains a combination of academic and empirical research about solitary confinement and human rights.
A panel of experts met online to answer questions about the joint PLS and UQ report on solitary confinement in Queensland. Their discussion provides leading perspectives on solitary confinement and suitable alternatives.
‘Unlike people quarantined in the community, isolated prisoners did not have access to fresh air, exercise, internet or mobile phones and some experienced poor living conditions’
‘Prisoners in Queensland have been denied access to lawyers, medical care and contact with family members under the state’s emergency lockdown of its correctional centres’
‘A team of researchers led by University of Queensland law professor Tamara Walsh and the Prisoners Legal Service have called for the elimination of prolonged confinement’
PLS makes submissions about how the proposed Inspector of Detention Services should be established to comply with Australia’s obligations under the Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture.
PLS makes submissions about how proposed parole amendments do not provide the reforms needed in the prison system and instead will come at the expense of people who are vulnerable in prison.
PLS calls for solutions to ending domestic and family violence that are based on increasing safety and reducing violence, rather than simply mandating punitive responses. Grassroots responses are the most effective.
PLS expresses opposition to reforms that propose blanket restrictions on particular categories of prisoners accessing low security facilities, which undermines community safety and human rights.
PLS makes submissions opposing the proposed extension of emergency powers which provide Corrective Services with broad powers to restrict access to prisons and limit in prison activities through lockdowns when less restrictive measures are available to manage COVID-19.
PLS proposes expanding the places of detention which can be visited by UN, introducing stronger privacy protections and supports for people in detention during UN visits and removing s132 of the CSA which prohibits interviews and statements being taken from prisoners without consent from Corrective Services.
PLS raises concerns about extending time frames for reviews of high security classifications, promotes the need for protections around the use of body scanning technology in prison and highlights concerns around the implementation of restrictions in prison during emergencies.
PLS acknowledges the Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognises their continuing connection to land, waters, and culture. We pay our respects to Elders, past and present, and acknowledge that sovereignty was never ceded in Australia.
PHONE: 07 3846 5074