CUPE plans talks over jail safety with Robert Trevors
Jail guards have been without a contract since June 2011
The union representing the province’s jail guards will be meeting with Public Safety Minister Robert Trevors later this month and will raise the issue of safety conditions at the Saint John Regional Correctional Centre.
Mike Davidson, a national representative with the Canadian Union of Public Employees, would not discuss in detail what subjects would be raised when his group sits down with the Department of Public Safety.
But Davidson said the situation in Saint John will be a key part of the discussions.
The provincial government was also refusing to disclose many details about the upcoming meeting.
Sheila Lagacé, a spokesperson for the department, said the only planned meeting the minister has with the union is for a general information meeting prior to contract negotiations.
The province's jail guards have been without a contract since June 2011.
There have been several high-profile incidents at the Saint John jail in recent years.
On Jan. 9, 2010, 16 inmates at the correctional centre barricaded themselves in a unit.
The prisoners busted toilets, smashed furniture, windows and fixtures and used toilet bowls as projectiles. The inmates also started a fire.
The riot caused more than $350,000 worth of damage to the jail.
In November 2011, a 33-year-old prisoner was found in a coma after another prisoner fractured his skull.
There are six jails in New Brunswick, which can hold 364 prisoners, according to the provincial government.
However, the jails have been 25 per cent over-capacity in the last two years.
In 2009-2010, the average daily population in the province's six jails was 457 prisoners and in 2010-2011 it was 452.