Tunisia: Support the reintegration of released inmates

06th September 2018

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in partnership with the Tunisian General Directorate of Prisons and Reintegration (DGPR) of the Ministry of Justice conducted a national workshop on "Mapping of the healthcare and reintegration services for former prisoners" on 6 September 2018. Around 70 representatives from ministries, civil society organizations and international organizations participated.

The workshop was an opportunity to present the mapping of government institutions besides national and international non-governmental organizations providing services in areas of healthcare such as the prevention and the treatment of drugs, HIV, tuberculosis, hepatitis in addition to the social inclusion of vulnerable groups and the economic reintegration of former prisoners.

Based on the results of the mapping, which were discussed and validated during the workshop, a guide presenting the different institutions, civil society and international organizations, as well as the services they are providing for former prisoners, will be prepared and circulated to all the actors so they can strengthen orientation and enhance networking.

Through the discussions, the importance of effective interventions was emphasized with the aim to assist ex-prisoners in reintegrating into the community and desisting from crime, particularly considering that high recidivism rates carry significant costs for society, both in terms of financial cost and public safety. Also, the reintegration of released prisoners is an important step towards the fulfillment of their human rights.

The workshop also addressed the issue of coordination between all the government and non-governmental actors to scale up reintegration interventions targeting former prisoners. Through group works and plenary debates, participants made their recommendations regarding the setting up of a coordinating mechanism that will allow the strengthening the exchange of information and experience among the actors. Such platform can be used to design and plan for new services that will benefit ex- prisoners both women and men.

The workshop was held under the project of "Strengthening prevention and healthcare services for drug-dependence and blood-borne infections in Tunisian prisons, and promoting the reintegration of inmates", generously funded by Drosos Foundation.