Hundreds of penitentiary employees to make facilities their home for coronavirus prevention

Hundreds of detention facility employees have volunteered for the initiative. Photo via Special Penitentiary Service of Georgia., 30 Mar 2020 - 19:17, Tbilisi,Georgia

Nearly 800 employees in penitentiary facilities in Georgia will stay at their workplace after their shifts over the following weeks to ensure safety of inmates during the new coronavirus outbreak.

In a move announced by Minister of Justice of Georgia Thea Tsulukiani on Monday, 780 staff in detention facilities will spend their off-work hours in specially created spaces at the sites.

Tsulukiani said the decision had been made to ensure both the ministry and prisoners felt confident the virus could not be "brought into" the prisons following possible outside contact by the employees.

The minister also said the new spaces for residence had been prepared and equipped in space of only two days.

In her announcement Tsulukiani thanked the volunteering staff for taking up the new conditions and said the ministry would provide free meals as well as financial compensation for the circumstances.