Jail inmates need psychiatrist, says judge
There should be a psychiatrist assigned specifically to work with inmates at Sleepy Hollow jail, says a P.E.I. judge.
Provincial court Judge Jeff Lantz says he sees people who are addicts or have mental health problems in his courtroom every day.
"Addictions in relation to drugs and alcohol, you could say pretty safely that 75 to 80 per cent, almost, would have those issues," said Lantz.
Like many working on the front lines of the justice system, Lantz believes treatment is a way to prevent reoffending.
"It makes perfect sense for them to be treated while they're there," he said, "so that when they're released they may have a better understanding of their issues and not back into the same cycle that they were before."
Dr. Richard Wedge, CEO of Health PEI said correctional services has been a focus.
"Certainly at the present time, we don't have enough services for mental health issues," said Wedge.
"We do supply various rehab programs as well as acute crisis programs."
But according to the government's mental health and addictions review it is not enough. The report says Corrections should get more help, but Wedge said that doesn't mean a full-time psychiatrist at the Provincial Correctional Centre in Sleepy Hollow anytime soon.