Authorities present strategies to fight overcrowded prisons
16 April 2010 - Successful experiences to fight overcrowded prisons, pointed as a global phenomenon by panels of 12th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, were presented in a workshop about strategies and best practices to face this issue, held this Friday morning, April 16th. Measures adopted in the United Kingdom, Finland, Thailand, German, Japan, New Zealand, Latin America and Africa were revealed on the occasion.
The director of the Latin-American Institute of the United Nations for Offense prevention and Delinquent treatment, Elias Carranza, member of the panel at this meeting, advocated that it was not possible to reduce overcrowding by constructing new units and that no country would be able to solve the problem by focusing efforts on raising new prisons. "It is necessary that the question be treated by the Judiciary in a holistic approach. There are researches conducted by the World Bank, for instance, which display social inequality between countries and within low income countries as an origin of imprisonment. Therefore, the issue must be thought globally", he highlighted.
The researcher also discoursed about the situation in the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica, countries that invested some resources in extensive prison reforms over the last years, promoting training for the penitentiary system servants in specialized academies and the selection of managers with significant career.
According to the general director of the National Penitentiary Department (Depen), Aírton Michels, Brazil has been giving a good example with forceful investments in public policies for prevention. "Pronasci, which attacks the roots of criminality and involves 23 States, is a successful initiative to reverse this issue for the mid and long terms ", he pointed.
Source: Brazilian National Justice Secretary