Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre.
Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre. Sarah Harvey

Prison in lockdown amid ongoing pay dispute

PRISON guards are on strike outside of Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre today due to a long-running dispute over working conditions.

A number of staff members were believed to have been locked out from entering the centre by the prison operators when they turned up for work this morning.

Dozens of staff and guards have gathered out the front of the prison to call for a review into the guard-to-inmate ratio in the prison.

United Voice co-ordinator Damien Davie said current conditions put both the guards and inmates at risk.

"Violence inside the prison has never been this bad," he said.

"There are 30 to 40 inmates for every one officer, sometimes up to 60 inmates. The officers have had enough and we're calling for a process to review this."

It comes after staff called for the immediate termination of management earlier this year, saying overcrowding and bullying have resulted in violence, a "revolving door" of drugs and guards losing control of the prison.

Prison guards have spoken anonymously to The Courier-Mail, saying the situation is now so dangerous they constantly fear for their safety, and if they speak out, their jobs.

There have been several incidents this year, including prisoners climbing onto the jail roof.