Members of Chuvashia Public Oversight Commission visit Correction Facility No. 4

posted 25 Sep 2014, 13:20 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 25 Sep 2014, 13:28 ]
25 September 2014

Source: (info)
Chair of the Public Oversight Commission for observance of human rights in places of detention in Chuvashia, Nikolai Kosyev, and leader of the human rights organization Shield and Sword, Aleksei Glukhov, have visited the men’s Correction Colony No. 4 located not far from Cheboksar.

Human rights defender Aleksei Glukhov received a mandate as a public observer, allowing him to visit closed institutions in the republic without hindrance, because of the shortage of members announced by the Public Chamber of Russia.

Aleksei Glukhov plans in the near future to visit women’s correction institutions. On 25 September, together with another new member of the Public Oversight Commission Sergei Petryakov, he intends to visit the medical facility for prisoners No. 7 in Tsivilsk, the sole such institution for women in Russia who suffer from alcoholism and drug addiction.

The civil society activists had a very negative impression of the state of  Correction Colony No. 4. The members of the Commission visited those parts of the Colony where inspectors do not usually go. 

Prisoners, taken aback by the appearance of the human rights defenders, immediately surrounded them and poured out their complaints. In one of the sections the observers discovered bed bugs, the walls of the rooms were covered with red spots – what remained after the inmates had tried to kill the bugs. In another section, there was a strong draught because the window frame had fallen out and had only been hastily fitted back without being repaired. 

"The general condition of the sleeping quarters was extremely unsatisfactory," the observers noted. "The previous members of the Public Oversight Commission had managed to build a constructive dialogue with the penitentiary service. They reacted positively to our comments and tried to improve the situation. For that reason we hope that there will be productive cooperation over the next two years."