Union Calls For Change As Staff Shortages Blamed For Yatala Prison Riots
Adelaide prisoners protest
Public Service Association of SA
Aa shortage of workers at the Yatala high-security centre is to blame for the prison riots over the weekend.
Inmates at the men's prison ripped infrastructure off the facility's walls, and tossed rubbish around the corridors in a protest against a lockdown.
Public Service Association of South Australia assistant secretary Natasha Brown said lack of staff has become common under a government policy.
"It's not an ideal situation for there to be regular lockdowns — if our prisons were staffed safely and adequately, this would not be a common occurrence," Brown said.
"Unfortunately, if the understaffing continues, this is going to become quite common ... Quite naturally, prisoners are going to become quite agitated."
Images inside the prison show toilets flooded, damaged cells and walkways in a frightening situation for workers.
Brown said the issue raises concerns for the state government, and must be addressed to halt the chaos.
"Unless the understaffing issue is addressed we're going to see more lockdowns and more prisoner disturbances as a result."
Meanwhile, several people are being treated for an alleged chemical leak at the Northfield prison. Hazmat crews are on site containing the discharge.
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