The province’s director of Correctional Services is relocating his office to the Burnside jail in an effort to curb “escalating inmate violence.”

Sean Kelly will move into the Central Nova Correctional Facility effective immediately, Justice Minister Ross Landry announced yesterday.

Kelly, who oversees all Nova Scotia penitentiaries, will nevertheless devote “100 per cent” of his attention to the beleaguered Burnside facility.

The move is one of several initiatives to curb violence at the jail, which has seen a slew of altercations involving guards and inmates.

Most recently, an inmate received life-threatening injuries at the hands of two other inmates last Friday. Halifax Regional Police were dispatched to the jail several hours after the early morning fight.

Landry downplayed questions as to whether Kelly’s arrival signalled a lack of confidence in the jail’s superintendant, Russell Partridge.

“Mr. Partridge continues in his role,” Landry told reporters. “We’re bringing Mr. Kelly in to help address and assist in some of these issues.”

Landry went on to say, however, Partridge is considering retirement.

“Mr. Partridge has indicated that he is looking to retire or is considering that. Whether he does ... is not as critical as that we identify support systems to help in the smooth transition when that does come about.”

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