Updated Thursday 9 July 2020 - update on virtual visits
A Personal Message to the Family and Friends of Residents at Addiewell
Here at HMP Addiewell we understand that having a loved one in custody can be a difficult time for family and friends, especially at the present time as we face much uncertainty surrounding the world wide COVID-19 pandemic.
I want to provide an update on what we have done to seek to ease the circumstances of those in our care and look to reassure you that we continue to do everything in our power to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all our residents during this challenging period.
We all have a part to play in slowing down and eradicating the COVID-19 virus and are making plans to ease restrictions as soon as we can, always based on Scottish Government advice. Inevitably the high-risk nature associated with the potential impact of COVID-19 in our closed environment means that we are likely to ease restrictions a little later than the general community. Even now as we put plans in place for when we can reintroduce visits and further resident activities, it is apparent they will look and feel very different from how things were before we moved into lockdown.
DID YOU KNOW....whilst we have been in lockdown:
I also want to let you know about some further actions we’ve taken to support your loved ones at this time including:
And for anyone who has had to isolate as a result of COVID-19, even more support has been put in place:
While the suspension of family visits to Addiewell remains in place, I'm delighted to say that virtual visits are now live. I want to reassure you that we understand the value and importance of family contact and I hope virtual visits provide you with a different opportunity to contact your loved ones.
Booking a virtual visit
Virtual visits are being delivered in partnership with UniLink, the same company that operates the Email A Prisoner scheme.
If you would like to register and book a virtual visit, support is available on the Scottish Prison Service website and their social media channels - including a short video outlining the process for visitors on the SPS YouTube channel. I have also provided a link to this information on the HMP Addiewell Twitter page @HMP Addiewell.
It's really important you follow the instructions very closely to ensure you register and connect properly - this will ensure everyone has the best virtual experience.
Thank you to staff and residents
I am immensely proud of all the staff at Addiewell and the incredible work being done in support of all the men in our care. We remain strong and prepared in this challenging and rapidly changing situation and continue to work alongside Public Health Scotland to ensure that we are taking the necessary steps to limit the impact of COVID-19 in our prison and in the wider community.
I also want to pay testament to the men in our care for they have demonstrated incredible patience and resilience; and have worked closely with us to minimise the impact of this disease across Addiewell.
I know this remains a worrying time for many residents and families and I know that I can’t give you all the answers you need right now, however I will tell you when it is safe for us to ease the current regime. I want to reassure you that we will get through this period of uncertainty together.
Thank you for your continued support.