Human Rights advocate, Mary Francis, feels the authorities should address concerns of remand inmates about trial delays.
But at the same time, Francis declared that she was not condoning crime.
Francis spoke after inmates posted videos on social media in which they called attention to their situation.
They also issued threats against officers at the Bordelais Correctional Facility (BCF).
And Tuesday evening firefighters put out a fire in a cell amid unrest by BCF inmates.
Emergency personnel transported two inmates to hospital after officers used ‘non-lethal’ beanbag shots to quell the disturbance.
“I understand and empathise with those young men,” Francis said in connection with the demand by remand inmates for speedy trials.
“What about restorative justice?” The Coordinator of the National Centre for Legal Aid and Human Rights asked.
Francis asserted that the authorities should give offenders a chance to repair the harm they have done to the society.
She also declared that they need rehabilitation and not necessarily incarceration.
Francis said no one is justifying crime.
But she told St Lucia Times that inmates are human beings.
As a result, she asserted that the government has a duty to ensure that they live under humane conditions.
Francis said the inmates have a right under the constitution to a speedy trial.
However she lamented that the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted trials.
Nevertheless, she suggested that the authorities consider lessening bail conditions to release some inmates.