Prison, 1901:{1}

Prison 1901 The Equality and Human Rights Commission Prison Inquiry 2018

Prison, 2018:

2018 The Equality and Human Rights Commission Prison Inquiry 2018

2018 The Equality and Human Rights Commission Prison Inquiry 2018

2018 The Equality and Human Rights Commission Prison Inquiry 2018



Prison Inquiry 2018

Inquiry into Conditions of Detention at HMP Jamestown


Equality and Human Rights Commission inquiry into the condition of detention at Her Majesty’s Prison, Jamestown, St Helena


The Equality and Human Rights Commission, having noted reports concerning conditions at Her Majesty’s Prison Jamestown, St Helena, conducted an inquiry in accordance with Section 15 of the Equality and Human Rights Ordinance 2015, under which the Commission may conduct an inquiry into a matter relating to any of its duties.

Scope of the Inquiry

The Commission examined the human rights of prisoners in a number of areas, including, among others:

  • the physical infrastructure of the building;

  • the size and conditions of cells;

  • sanitisation;

  • temperature control and ventilation;

  • access to food and water;

  • clothing;

  • washing facilities;

  • access to medical treatment;

  • recreational facilities and opportunities for exercise;

  • access to complaints handling mechanisms;

  • Protection from violence.


The purpose of the inquiry, was to assess the conditions of detention in the prison against relevant human rights standards, including:

  • The European Convention on Human Rights

    • Article 2 - the right to life;

    • Article 3 - the prohibition of torture, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment;

    • Article 8 - the right to respect of private and family life;

    • Article 14 - the prohibition on discrimination.

  • The Constitution of St Helena, Ascension Island and Tristan da Cunha:

    • Part 2 Fundamental Rights and Freedoms of the Individual, with a specific focus on Clause 11 - Protection of right of prisoners to humane treatment.

The final report, including 47 findings and 38 recommendations was published by the Commission on 3rd December 2018 and made publicly available. Copies of the report were submitted, to St Helena Government, the United Kingdom Government, and will form part of a submission to the United Nations, pursuant to Commission’s functions as a National Human Rights Institutions operating in accordance with the provision of the United Nations General Assembly resolution 48/134 (the Paris Principles).

Time Scales

The inquiry began on 19th March 2018 and the final report was published in 3rd December 2018.

Useful links

External prison image courtesy of

{1} With one of the Boer Prisoners held here at the beginning of the 20th Century.

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