The United States Government says weaknesses in Jamaica’s judicial system are obstructing access to justice for victims of crime and their families.
The US findings are contained in the 2015 Country Reports on Human Rights Practice, which US Secretary of State John Kerry shared with the Jamaican parliament yesterday.
The report also says weaknesses in Jamaica’s Justice system are preventing the families of persons allegedly unlawful killed by the security forces from obtaining Justice.
According to the report, at the top of the list of serious” human rights issues in Jamaica is an “overburdened, under-resourced and dysfunctional judicial system.”
The report raises fresh concerns regarding the treatment of prisoners in Jamaica and the upholding of the rights of detainees
It says dilapidated buildings, inconsistent health care and overcrowding in some facilities presents challenges to the prison and detention centre systems.
The report observed that female prisoners were “generally provided better conditions than male inmates”.
The US Government says it’s also concerned that medical care is limited in Jamaica’s prisons and there is “no specific prisoner ombudsman”.
The Obama-administration says it recognizes that the government of Jamaica has increasingly effective mechanisms to investigate and punish abuse and corruption in general.
However, according to the US, lengthy trials in Jamaica with numerous delays continue to be a systemic problem.
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