Ashley Smith Inquiry Told Mentally Ill Female Prisoners Have Inadequate Treatment Options

The inquest into Ashley Smith’s dramatic prison death heard on Monday that there are many female inmates that require intensive psychiatric therapy, whereas treatment facilities are short in supply. Dr. Olajide (Jide) Adelugba mentioned in his testimony that country’s only psychiatric prison that attends female offenders, i.e. the Regional Psychiatric Centre in Saskatoon, can only accommodate 12 female patients at a time.

Adelugba alleged during his testimony, that “there are so many women who are in prison and there are so many of them who could benefit from the services we provide at RPC.” He added that “we don’t have the capacity for that, so we always get the worst of the worst.” Adelugba worked as a clinical director at RPC, i.e. the psychiatric prison operated by Correctional Service Canada, at the time when Ashley Smith was brought in from Nova Institution in Truro, N.S. He declared that the staff at the facility failed to deal with her disruptive, self-harming behaviour. Furthermore, he asserted that “I would say she had a serious mental illness.” Adelugba added that “while she was with us, she was perpetually in crisis.”

Adelugba reported that Smith “very rarely” communicated with other inmates, because she was kept in segregation for the majority the four while in youth and adult custody. Adelugba, being one of seven psychiatrists at RPC, was Smith’s primary doctor. He noted on her arrival on Dec. 20, 2006, that she wasn’t suicidal, however she did enjoyed self-harming. He noted that “denies intention to hurt self,” and “says it makes her feel better.”


Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


Confirm you are not a spammer! *