PHILIPSBURG–Guards at the Pointe Blanche prison walked out from the job on Sunday after working overtime. The Daily Herald understands that a number of guards called in sick and many guards who were working believed it had to do with it being Carnival time.
Fed up and frustrated, guards abandoned their posts and left prisoners unattended. Police officers were called in for assistance and did what they could while prison management tried to muster together guards and get the situation back under control. Visiting hours were cancelled and visitors were not given a reason for the cancellation.
A prisoner’s family member contacted The Daily Herald on Sunday and said she understood that the prisoners had not eaten for nearly 16 hours. Pointe Blanche prison spokesman Fernando Clark said the situation was under control and guards just had concern about absenteeism. Clark did not go into further discussion regarding the matter.
This newspaper contacted the WICSU/PSU union representingthe Pointe Blanche guards and union representative Julia Solognier said she was not aware of the walkout.
The prison is under the management of Wilfred Williams and Community Police Officer Inspector Steven Carty. The two were given three months to normalise the situation at the prison by authority of Minister of Justice Rafael Boasman.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/65420-prison-guards-abandon-posts-for-hours-sunday