Safeguards
Photo: Igor Schimbator / OSCE

Ensuring that all detainees have prompt access to a lawyer is a key safeguard of their rights in prison, whether they are in pre-trial detention or convicted of an offence. In addition to assisting criminal suspects to prepare their defense, the right to access a lawyer can help protect detainees’ rights by:


· Redressing the power imbalance between detainees and the authorities,
· Assisting...

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Ensuring all persons deprived of their liberty have prompt access to a judge is an important safeguard against arbitrary detention and to ensure that the rights of detainees are respected. The right of detainees in prison to access a judge includes 1) the right of criminal suspects to be brought promptly before a judge and 2) the right of all detainees to challenge the legality of detention (habeas corpus). In both cases, the court...

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The right to information is important for legal proceedings for persons in pre-trial detention (including the information required for an appeal) as well as when it comes to the rights, obligations and rules of life in detention.

The right to information is essential for all persons deprived of liberty since one cannot assert one’s rights if they are not aware of them.  Contrary to the outside world, places of...

Browse detention issues

Detainees have the right to make complaints about any aspect of their treatment or conditions in detention to the prison authorities and independent bodies. Effective complaints procedures help ensure that detainees’ rights are respected and act as a fundamental safeguard against ill-treatment in prisons. These mechanisms will take a variety of forms but they should be accessible, confidential, impartial and thorough, and provide a...

Browse detention issues

There are different types of records kept in prisons, and each performs a particular function. The office register and/or the prison records, the daily log (that contains all information linked to daily life in the establishment) as well as individual detainee files are essential documents in order to prevent abuse and ill-treatment as well as prevent from enforced disappearances. Medical records are fundamental in determining how...

Browse detention issues

Deprivation of liberty, which is characterised by an imbalance of power between representatives of the authority and detainees, results in risks of all types of abuse, including ill-treatment and torture.  These risks are further heightened because of the closed and isolated nature of places of detention.  Internal and external oversight is necessary in order to reduce the opacity typical of places of deprivation of liberty as...

Browse detention issues

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Safeguards
Photo: Igor Schimbator / OSCE

Access and contact with lawyer

Ensuring that all detainees have prompt access to a lawyer is a key safeguard of their rights in prison, whether they are in pre-trial detention or convicted of an offence. In addition to assisting criminal suspects to prepare their defense, the right to access a lawyer can help protect detainees’ rights by:


· Redressing the power imbalance between detainees and the authorities,
· Assisting...

Browse detention issues

Access to a judge

Ensuring all persons deprived of their liberty have prompt access to a judge is an important safeguard against arbitrary detention and to ensure that the rights of detainees are respected. The right of detainees in prison to access a judge includes 1) the right of criminal suspects to be brought promptly before a judge and 2) the right of all detainees to challenge the legality of detention (habeas corpus). In both cases, the court...

Browse detention issues

Right to information

The right to information is important for legal proceedings for persons in pre-trial detention (including the information required for an appeal) as well as when it comes to the rights, obligations and rules of life in detention.

The right to information is essential for all persons deprived of liberty since one cannot assert one’s rights if they are not aware of them.  Contrary to the outside world, places of...

Browse detention issues

Complaints procedures

Detainees have the right to make complaints about any aspect of their treatment or conditions in detention to the prison authorities and independent bodies. Effective complaints procedures help ensure that detainees’ rights are respected and act as a fundamental safeguard against ill-treatment in prisons. These mechanisms will take a variety of forms but they should be accessible, confidential, impartial and thorough, and provide a...

Browse detention issues

Files and records

There are different types of records kept in prisons, and each performs a particular function. The office register and/or the prison records, the daily log (that contains all information linked to daily life in the establishment) as well as individual detainee files are essential documents in order to prevent abuse and ill-treatment as well as prevent from enforced disappearances. Medical records are fundamental in determining how...

Browse detention issues

Inspection mechanisms

Deprivation of liberty, which is characterised by an imbalance of power between representatives of the authority and detainees, results in risks of all types of abuse, including ill-treatment and torture.  These risks are further heightened because of the closed and isolated nature of places of detention.  Internal and external oversight is necessary in order to reduce the opacity typical of places of deprivation of liberty as...

Browse detention issues