Inmates moved to Kingston area prison after BCC fire

Thirty inmates displaced by last week’s fire at Baffin Correctional Centre have been sent to Joyceville Institution, a medium-security federal prison outside Kingston, Ont., Nunavut’s Department of Justice announced Monday.

Another 30 inmates from BCC, meanwhile, have been transferred to facilities across the territory, states a news release.

Prior to these transfers, the inmates were temporarily held at accommodations in Iqaluit provided by the RCMP detachment, the Nunavut Court of Justice sheriffs and by other correctional facilities within Iqaluit, the Justice Department said.

On March 18, emergency crews received a call about a fire at the Iqaluit jail around 3 p.m. as smoke billowed from the building just north of the city’s airport. The RCMP is investigating the fire as an arson.

The fire was minor and caused by a small piece of burning plastic, said Lisa Milosavljevic, the City of Iqaluit’s communications manager, in an emailed statement.

There were no injuries, to which Hickes credited the quick action of BCC staff and first responders.

It remains unclear where in BCC the fire happened or how much damage was caused.

Hickes said that “maintenance crews are assessing the damage to the facility and creating remediation plans to determine a timeline for reopening the BCC.”

Story by David Venn, Nunatsiaq News, for the Local Journalism Initiative