Response: LGCC COVID-19 update

As at midday 7 January, Lotus Glen Correctional Centre had four officers unfit for duty due to COVID-19.

There was one prisoner with confirmed COVID. The unit has remained in lockdown to allow for prisoner testing and cleaning.

Due to the rapidly changing situation with COVID-19 in Far North Queensland, the decision has been made to pause personal visits this weekend (8-9 January).

Queensland Health is responsible for the management prisoner health, and questions on testing would be a matter for them.

Like every large employer, we are responding to the rapidly changing COVID-19 situation. We are working closely with Queensland Health to make appropriate decisions to ensure the safety and security of our centres. The safety of our officers is an absolute priority.

Every centre across the State has extensive plans in place to manage the scenarios posed by COVID-19 and the unique risks of the virus in prison environments.

All decisions, including on lockdowns of parts of the prison are being made in consultation with Queensland Health.

Every prison has a comprehensive store of PPE in addition to a Statewide stockpile, which is used in line with Queensland Health direction. All officers working in Queensland correctional centres are required to have had at least one vaccination, and to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by January 24.
Correctional Centres have adjusted their rostering to cover for the officers who are absent from the workplace, including those who are self-isolating as a result of social exposure to positive cases.

Every prisoner in Queensland has been offered vaccination, and anecdotally the uptake amongst prisoners is higher than the general public.

New prisoners are placed in isolation for a period and offered vaccination upon reception into a correctional centre.

Every month approximately 1000 people are released from prison in Queensland, and roughly the same number enter the system, so there is a rolling program of vaccination managed by Queensland Health.

*Please note that going forward, QCS will be updating COVID-related figures once daily, with the past 24 hours’ cases available from 12pm. Inquiries before 12pm will receive the previous day’s numbers.*