Welcome to the Prisoner Ombudsman

The Prisoner Ombudsman is appointed by the Minister of Justice for Northern Ireland and is completely independent of the Northern Ireland Prison Service (NIPS).

The post has been vacant since the retirement of the previous Ombudsman on 31 August 2017. A successor will be announced following the appointment of a Justice Minister.

In the interim, the Chief Inspector of Criminal Justice Inspection Northern Ireland, Mr Brendan McGuigan will oversee the work of the Prisoner Ombudsman’s office.

The Prisoner Ombudsman’s office will continue to investigate:

  • Complaints from prisoners held in Northern Ireland
  • Visitors to prisoners held in Northern Ireland
  • Deaths in Prison Service custody in Northern Ireland