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Vigil to be held for prison suicide victims

05 March 2018

Posted in: Pacific Radio News,

By Ruci Farrell -

A prison advocacy group says the death of 18-year-old Christchurch Prison inmate Kaine Morrell highlights how ill-equipped prisons are to deal with mental health issues and prisoner suicides.

People Against Prisons Aotearoa is co-ordinating candlelight vigils to be held tomorrow night calling for more help for at-risk prisoners.

 Spokesperson Emilie Rakete says solitary confinement is no place to put inmates at high risk of taking their own lives.

"This suicide was easily preventable," she says. "Prison knew that Kaine had a history of mental illness. He reached out to the prison and said that he needed help and they gave him solitary confinement instead."

"If we make sure prisoners are taken into a theurapetic environment where they can receive help then we can see these kinds of deaths eliminated."

Candle light vigils will be held in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin tomorrow night at 8pm.