May 9, 2022

Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA)

The Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) was signed into law by President George W. Bush on September 4, 2003. It was created to eliminate sexual abuse in confinement facilities including adult prisons and jails, lockups, community confinement facilities and juvenile facilities.  PREA includes forty-three (43) standards that define three clear goals, to prevent, detect and respond to sexual abuse.

The Virgin Islands Bureau of Corrections (“The Bureau”) is responsible for protecting the rights of inmates and offenders placed under the Bureau’s custody and supervision.  This includes providing inmates with a safe environment, free from sexual abuse, sexual battery, and sexual harassment.  The Bureau has established a zero-tolerance policy for all forms of sexual abuse, sexual battery, and sexual harassment, pursuant to the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003.  Zero-tolerance applies not only to incidents between inmates, but also to incidents involving staff members, contractors, and volunteers.  The policy also encompasses an inmate, staff, or volunteer’s right to be free from retaliation if they report an incident or participate in an investigation.

All staff members, contractors and volunteers receive training on their duties and responsibilities under PREA and the Bureau’s zero-tolerance policy.

All staff members, contractors, and volunteers are informed that they are required by law to report any incident(s) or allegation(s) of sexual abuse, sexual battery, or sexual harassment immediately.

The Bureau has on staff a PREA Coordinator to assist in developing, implementing, and monitoring the Bureau’s compliance of the PREA standards.

For questions or comments regarding The Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) please contact us our PREA Coordinator at 340.778.0400.