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Inmate labour returns littered beach to postcard perfect

For inmates at Northward prison, doing hard time isn’t supposed to be a day at the beach, but when one West Bay community needed a helping hand to remove litter and debris from their quiet stretch of beach, HM Prisons answered the call.

Sand Hole beach is on its way to being postcard perfect once again, thanks to the hard work of inmates from Northward prison.

“I been here on these beaches from when I was young, you know,” said inmate Jason Smith, himself a West bayer. He told Cayman 27 being part of the clean up effort gives him a sense of satisfaction.

“It feels great to know that I come back to my community to clean up and keep the place clean and assist with the beaches, you know, because right now it’s in a mess,” said Mr. Smith.

Equipped with low-tech tools like rakes and dozens of black plastic bags, the inmates transform the littered beach into a slice of paradise.

“It feels really great to know that I assisted in cleaning it up,” said Mr. Smith.

“It’s lovely to see it looking how it should,” said HM Prisons Director Neil Lavis. He told Cayman 27 the idea came straight to inbox from a concerned citizen.

“We are always on the lookout for things like this, and like I said, this is as simple as an email directly to me, just saying look, I use this beach every day, it needs cleaning, can you please help, and it’s gone from there,” said Mr. Lavis.

He said projects like this one help prepare those serving time to be reintegrated into society.

“These guys are coming to the end of their time now, they need to be integrated, this gives them a sense of purpose, a sense of pride, it gives them a good work ethic you know, they’re getting out of bed on a morning and three coming out and doing a full day’s work and it’s hard work, as you can see,” said Mr. Lavis.

Hard work, helping out the community they aspire to rejoin.


Mr. Lavis stresed the prison is always on the lookout for projects of this nature.

He said it’s a great way for his inmates to pay back the community for the crimes they’ve committed.

About the author

Joe Avary

Joe Avary

Joe Avary has been with Cayman 27 since 2014. He brings 20 years in television experience to the job, working hard every day to bring the people of Cayman stories that inform the public and make a difference in the community. Joe hopes his love for the Cayman Islands shines through in his informative and entertaining weather reports. If you have a story idea for Joe or just want to say hello, call him at 324-2141 or send an email to

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