Terms and Conditions for Life Sentence Prisoners 1989

Here is an example of the form issued by the Northern Ireland Office to those lifers who were being released through the Work Out Scheme in the late 80′s.  The scheme was housed in the Annexe which basically was an extension of ‘D’ Wing where long term ordinary prisoners were held.  In the work out scheme all types of life prisoners were held together prior to release–both ordinary prisoners and political from both republican and loyalist factions.  The idea was to wean you back into society with the help of probation board and welfare workers.  You were given some short periods outside accompanied by the stats before being allowed out for a weekend alone.  You then had to get yourself a job before finally getting out.  You went to whatever job you had early in the morning and came back at six o’clock to spend Monday-Thursday night in the Annexe.  When you were released on Friday morning to go to work you didnt come back until Monday night.  This period lasted for three months before you were conditionally released.  One of the conditions was that you had to come to the Crumlin Road every Friday to sign a Northern Ireland Office form.  Three months later you were signed off completely but were very aware that you could be brought back at any time for the slightest of reasons.  And some did indeed get brought back for the most dubious of reasons.

 

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