The Policing Board has published its latest Custody Visiting Annual Report which provides a comprehensive source of monitoring data in relation to the Custody Visiting Scheme. It highlights statistical evidence including:
- the number of detainees arrested under the Police and Criminal Evidence (Northern Ireland) Order 1989 (PACE) and detained under the Terrorism Act (2000) (TACT) who were interviewed by an ICV;
- the number of valid and invalid visits; and
- information on satisfactory and unsatisfactory visits.
In the reporting period, 514 unannounced visits were made to Police Custody Suites across Northern Ireland. At the time of ICV visits, a total of 1,207 detainees were in custody and ICVs spoke to 557 (46%) detainees, a 1% decrease from the 2020 - 2021 uptake rate of 541 detainees (47%).
Speaking about the Scheme, Board Chair Doug Garrett said:
“Administered by the Board, this Scheme allows for independent volunteers from the community to make unannounced visits to police stations to check on the rights of detainees being held there, their health and wellbeing and the conditions of detention.
“The Custody Visitors report their findings to the Board, and where concerns have been identified, they are raised with PSNI who must advise the Board of action taken to remedy them and these are outlined in the report now published.
“As a Board we are extremely grateful to our volunteers who give up their time to bring independent community oversight to police custody arrangements. I would like to thank them for all their hard work and dedication.”
For any further information please contact the Policing Board Communications Office on 028 90408500
Notes to Editors
- The Northern Ireland Independent Custody Visiting Scheme was first established in 1991 and was made statutory in 2001 under Section 73 of the Police (Northern Ireland) Act 2000.
- The Board appoints the Custody Visitors and administers the Scheme. The Board also delivers training, provides policy updates and monitors the delivery of the Scheme.
- The Custody Visiting Annual Report can be found in the Publications Section of the Board’s website here (insert link)
Notes to Editors ends.