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Office asks the Ministry of Justice to include its representative to the commission monitoring the situation with prison conditions


Office for the rights of persons with disabilities sent an official letter to the Ministry of Justice with a request to include a representative of the organization to the republican public monitoring commission under the ministry. 

- The legal office of our organization receives appeals concerning conditions in Belarusian prisons for people with disabilities, - says the director of the Office for the rights of persons with disabilities Enira Bronitskaya. We can observe violation of rights of these people and it includes the absence of barrier-free environment, necessary medical care based on their diagnoses. We are not arguing the fact that a person who committed a crime should serve a sentence but it should not be a torture because of the absence of necessary conditions for persons with disabilities. One of the main goals of our activities is the protection of people with disabilities from all the types of discrimination, rendering assistance to person with disabilities in protection of their rights and it explains our request to the Ministry of justice.

Such organizations as UN prepare special recommendations on the improvement of the situation with persons with disabilities understanding special vulnerability of some categories of prisoners and the necessity of special treatment

So, for example, some time ago a mother of a 1st group wheelchair-bound disabled appealed to the legal office. He has been serving his sentence for more than a year. Because of his disease he needs constant assistance and definite conditions. But because there is no any assistance and necessary conditions the state of his health has irreversible worsened. 11 out 16 months of the imprisonment he has spent in the hospital of the pre-trial prison №1 where he is staying till now. He had a surgical operation and we don’t have enough reasons to think that the threat to his life and health has past. As for today lawyers of the Office for the rights of persons with disabilities appealed to the Penal Correction Department of the Ministry of Internal Affair of the Republic of Belarus and the Republican hospital of the pre-trial prison №1 with the request to monitor the situation and to initiate further special medical examination of the prisoner’s state of health in order to define the possibility of further serving sentence by him based on the state of his health.

Previous appeals to the legal office concerned common problems of prison conditions of prisoners with disabilities, payments they have to get, right for labour and so on.