Crowding reduces rehabilitation space

The overcrowding of inmates in a large number of prisons in the country is one of the constants that the authorities of the previous and current governments had to deal with, because of the risks that this posed to the health of the inmates and the environment of the detainees. Peace for example.


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As of April 29, there was a shortfall of about 3,300 places for people deprived of liberty nationwide, according to National Service Comprehensive Care for Adults Deprived of Liberty (SNAI) records.

Especially in Santo Domingo, where on Monday 9 May, a slaughterwith more than 40 deceased guestsThe situation was critical.

There, activities at the Center of Deprivation of Liberty 1 in that district were carried out in practically crowded conditions, according to available official figures and testimonies of relatives of prisoners, who questioned the measures taken by the government to protect peace.

The effective carrying capacity of this prison, that is, the possibility of receiving people in favorable conditions, is 914 positions. As of April 29, the population that should house this prison almost doubled: there were 1,611 inmates.

However, at a press conference, Pablo Ramirez, director Comprehensive National Care Service for Adults Deprived of Liberty, on Monday May 9, that there are about 1,700 guests. The official also warned that more than 100 prisoners had arrived at that prison in recent weeks, after the April 3 massacre in Toure, on orders of judges who approved habeas corpus.

“(There were) 124 (who) entered despite the overcrowding. He indicated that this is due to judicial rulings that do not allow us to run rehabilitation centers according to the level of danger of the deprived of his liberty.

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According to a review by this newspaper of prison population figures, as of April 29, there is a shortage of prisoner places in 23 of the 36 places of deprivation of liberty.

The Guayas 1 Center for Deprivation of Liberty ranks first in the list of prisons with this problem, with an overcrowding of 1,465 inmates. Prison 1 in El Oro also records more prisoners than it should (around 500). Another prison center in these conditions is Tungurahua Prison 1, with approximately 400 inmates.

although Pardons The measures granted by the government and other measures implemented have reduced the number of prisoners, the problem of overcrowding is notorious and the figures need to be revealed. In the report prepared by a delegation from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), after its visit to the country in December, it was stated that “the levels of overcrowding will be higher due to the fact that the nominal capacity declared by the state will depend only on the number of beds, and will not correspond to the actual accommodation capacity” .

Recruitment: $70 million this year

The National Comprehensive Care Service for Adults Deprived of Liberty (SNAI) plans to purchase supplies and contract services for about $70 million this year, according to its annual contracting plan. For example, the list of items to buy includes batons, handcuffs, and pepper spray for $266,000.

One of the recent awarded purchases corresponds to the acquisition of 6,300 locks for SNAI’s Centers of Deprivation of Liberty nationwide, for $153,000, according to National Public Procurement Service (Sercop) records.

The Public Procurement Portal explains that the country’s prison agency awarded 104 contractual actions in 2021 (public and private order), for about $4.8 million. Among these purchases is the acquisition of radio equipment for the amount of $87,000, and others of a lower value, for example, for civil works.

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Myrtle Frost

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