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Introduction: In Belgium, prison sentences of up to 3 years are considered short sentences. At present, those sentenced to such sentences (up to 3 years) are released at 1/3 of their sentence almost automatically. Some, under certain conditions, benefit directly from electronic surveillance and thus avoid prison. These decisions were, with a few exceptions, taken directly by the prison governor. This will change in the not too distant future. The legislator has provided for the enforcement of short sentences (up to 3 years) and the processing of decisions by a sentence enforcement judge. This means that the prison management will lose its autonomy in managing this type of prisoner and that there will no longer be an automatic system for provisional release after a third of the sentence has been served. Within the framework of the application of this law, Belgium wishes to reflect on how to deal with this type of convict both in terms of the modalities of incarceration (type of prison, regime within the prison, possibilities to be offered as work, training,...) but also in terms of working methodology and the particular skills of the staff.
We have a similar regulation for sentences up to one year. But, for us, the real difference in terms of execution, is wether the inmate is in ordinary/close or open regime.What is the security level of the infrastructure?
In open regimen facilities, the security level is necessarily lower.Is it a different infrastructure than for other convicts?
Yes. Usually, there are different buildings.What does the regime consist of?
Contact with the outside is a priority. Working, education, medical care, etc.is developed, as much as possible, in the community.Is the profile of the officers different from that for long-sentenced convicts?
Not as a different carrear, but yes with training possibilities.Are there any special activities?
As said before, contact with the outside is fundamental.
NoWhat is the security level of the infrastructure?
Semi-open or open wardsIs it a different infrastructure than for other convicts?
NoWhat does the regime consist of?
Individualization of punishment (Individual Program of Enforcement of the Prison Sentence), for the purpose of resocializationIs the profile of the officers different from that for long-sentenced convicts?
NoAre there any special activities?
No, just like for all the other prisoners - work, education, organization of leisure time, and rehabilitation programs (special treatment programs for: drug addicts, alcohol addicts, persons suffering from PTSD, sex offenders, violent offenders, offenders in traffic, responsible parenthood and enhancing social skills)
In Scotland a short term prison sentence is one which is less than 4 years. Short term prisoners are automatically released after serving half of their sentence. The prison governor plays no part and has no discretionary role in setting sentence length. Sentence lengths are set by the Scottish courts.What is the security level of the infrastructure?
In Scotland all prisoners are classified on a supervision scale of ‘Low’, ‘Medium’ and ‘High’.Is it a different infrastructure than for other convicts?
Where space and accommodation permits, short term prisoners are held separately from long term prisoners. However, due to high prison population numbers, this in not always possible.What does the regime consist of?
Regimes may vary between establishments, but there is no differentiation on grounds of sentence length.Is the profile of the officers different from that for long-sentenced convicts?
No.Are there any special activities?
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In terms of the legislation, there is no difference for this group of inmates in comparison with other groups. They are released on conditional release after having served 2/3 of their prison sentence automatically, unless they have been reported of misconduct to the extent that it has been decided that the inmate have to stay longer in prison. This is the same for every inmate regardless the length of the sentence. There is one exception though, if the sentence is shorter than a month, there is no conditional release. Regarding placement there are no prisons that are designated to work only with short time prisoners. Placement is decided according to the law, where chapter 2, section 1 of the Swedish Act on Imprisonment (Swedish Code of Statutes 2010:610, SAI below) states that: A prisoner may not be placed so that he or she is subjected to a more intrusive supervision and control than that which is necessary to maintain good order or security. The prisoner's need of occupation, care and appropriate release planning shall be taken into account to the extent possible when deciding on placement. This is, as stated above, applicable for all inmates. However, some instruments are adjusted to better fit the needs, and the time given to work with, prisoners serving short prison sentences (below referred to as short time inmates). Chapter 1, section 5 of the SAI, states that Enforcement shall be planned and devised after consultation with the prisoner and in collaboration with the relevant authorities. The instrument used to plan each inmates enforcement, and the risk and need-assessment instrument used, is examples of instruments that has been adjusted better fit this targeted group of inmates. The Swedish Prison and Probation Service is currently working hard striving towards to increase the usage of special preparatory release measures during, and after the time in prison is over and the conditional release starts, within the group of short time inmates. By doing so, the inmate can get the sometimes needed support and control in the critical point when leaving the prison and re-entering the society. Rehabilitation programs has also been created, and existing ones has been adjusted, to better-fit inmates that only has a short time to serve in prison.What is the security level of the infrastructure?
As mentioned under question 1, the infrastructure is no different compared to other groups of inmates. Placement is based upon a risk- and need assessment where the length of the sentence is only one factor to consider. This means that an inmate with a very short time to serve in prison, still can be placed in maximum security, as well as a more open prison, depending on what the risk evaluation lies at hand.Is it a different infrastructure than for other convicts?
See above.What does the regime consist of?
See above.Is the profile of the officers different from that for long-sentenced convicts?
No, every officer undertake a basic education. There are some certain education to undertake when working with certain groups och inmates, such as young inmates and inmates with assessed high risks, but not specially for short time prisoners.Are there any special activities?
The term “short sentence” is not legally defined in Slovakia. However, the Act on Prison Sentence Execution, within the treatment of convicts, enables the specialised prison staff to prepare, instead of a standard treatment program that is elaborated for each convict (it consists of a set of activities focused on personality development of the convict and his/her resocialisation), only short-term treatment aims (i.e. it is a simplified version of the treatment program) for the convict who after placement into designated group of convicts, has the rest of his/her sentence shorter that nine months. A simplified content of admission psychological personality examination of the convict may also precede the short-term aims.What is the security level of the infrastructure?
The length of the prison sentence itself is not a determining factor for the decision on the security measures applied and the placement of a convict in open or closed prison.Is it a different infrastructure than for other convicts?
Please, see the answer to question no. 2.What does the regime consist of?
The scope of rights and obligations is the same for all convicts, regardless the length of the sentence. The scope of activities focused on resocialisation of the convict may differ (please, see the answer to question no. 1).Is the profile of the officers different from that for long-sentenced convicts?
No.Are there any special activities?
In Slovenia are inmates sent to serve their sentence according to the Instructions on allocation and sending of sentenced persons to serve prison sentences. They are sent by the Court and there are facilities where they serve only those inmates with sentences up to 1 year and a half.What is the security level of the infrastructure?
In each facility for serving sentence up to 1 year and half there are open, semi-open and closed regime of serving sentence. The Court could decide if someone will serve sentence in any of those regimes. There is also possibility to be placed in less secure level according to your personal plan.Is it a different infrastructure than for other convicts?
Open regime has no walls around facility.What does the regime consist of?
In open and semi-open regime there are more benefits and free exits during the weekend. Each inmate has to follow his/her personal plan. There is also possible to visit daily educational institution outside or work under the contract in outside company.Is the profile of the officers different from that for long-sentenced convicts?
The profile of the officers is not different.Are there any special activities?
There are no special activities.
We do not have a similar system. When it comes to short-term prisoners, then the length of sentence is short, ie less than 6 months. A prisoner who has not served an imprisonment sentence within three years preceding the current offence can be released on parole when he or she has served half of the sentence. If the offence was committed when under the age of 21 years, the corresponding time is one third. Otherwise, a prisoner sentenced to imprisonment can be released on parole when he or she has served two thirds of the sentence or half of the sentence passed for an offence committed when under the age of 21 years. Release on parole is possible when at least 14 days of the sentence has been served. On certain conditions, a prisoner may be placed outside the prison in probationary liberty under supervision (aka supervised probationary freedom) effected by technical and other means for at most six months before conditional release or the release from serving the entire sentence. The prisoner is presumed to comply with abstinence from substances and other conditions of the probationary freedom. Probationary freedom requires a release plan, which includes information on, e.g., the housing and livelihood of the released offender, the obligation to participate in an activity, the daily schedule and the supervision of the probationary freedom. Prisons are responsible for the supervision of probationary freedom. Conditional release, also known as parole, refers to the release of a prisoner sentenced to unconditional imprisonment to serve the rest of the sentence in freedom. Only a specified proportion of the sentence is served in prison and the last part in freedom with or without supervision. A conditionally released prisoner is ordered under supervision as a rule if the part of the prison sentence not served in prison is longer than one year. The goal of the supervision is to prevent recidivism by increasing the abilities of the released prisoner to adopt a life without crime. The Criminal Sanctions Agency is responsible for the organization and realization of the supervision. Conditional release means the release of a prisoner sentenced to unconditional imprisonment to serve the remainder of the sentence in freedom. Only a specific proportion of a sentence is served in prison and the last part in freedom with or without supervision. A conditionally released prisoner is placed under supervision if the part of the prison sentence not served in prison is longer. The Criminal Sanctions Agency is responsible for the organization and implementation of the supervision. The supervisor is an official of the Criminal Sanctions Agency who works in a community sanctions office. A private person with appropriate training and work experience may be appointed as an assistant supervisor. The goal of the supervision is to prevent recidivism by increasing the abilities of the released prisoner to adopt a life without crime. Therefore, the prisoner is involved in the preparation of an individual supervision plan, which aims to support social coping. The plan is coordinated with the sentence plan drawn up in prison and other plans drawn up elsewhere, for instance, in social services. The preparation of the supervision plan is started in good time prior to the release so that the plan can be taken into use at the beginning of the supervision. The supervision lasts for the probationary period, which can be three years at the most. For justified reasons, the supervisor may propose an earlier termination of the supervision. The Criminal Sanctions Agency pays reasonable travel expenses related to the supervision appointments. The amount is based on the costs of using public transport.What is the security level of the infrastructure? Is it a different infrastructure than for other convicts? What does the regime consist of? Is the profile of the officers different from that for long-sentenced convicts? Are there any special activities?
According with Section 38 Paragraph 2 and Paragraph 21 of the Criminal Law, a temporary deprivation of liberty may be determined for a period not exceeding three months. Convicts sentenced to temporary deprivation of liberty and convicts for whom the court has replaced the unserved sentence – community service or a fine – with a temporary deprivation of liberty, serve the sentence only at the highest level of the sentence serving regime in a partly-closed prison. Persons sentenced to temporary deprivation of liberty, are not subject to a progressive enforcement system of their sentence, i.e. they are not subject to a gradual mitigation, strengthening or relocation of the regime. Persons sentenced to temporary deprivation of liberty shall be kept separate from other convicts, taking into account that men and women, as well as minors and adults, are kept in custodial institutions separately, however they may be involved in mental care and resocialisation activities together with other convicts. The risks and needs of a convicted person, sentenced to temporary deprivation of liberty, shall be surveyed within two weeks after his or her placement in a custodial institution to begin serving his or her sentence. Information regarding the participation of a convicted person sentenced to temporary deprivation of liberty in resocialisation measures shall be entered in his or her personal file. However, convicts sentenced to temporary deprivation of liberty shall not be involved in general or vocational education, but shall, as far as possible, be provided with interest education activities and involvement in social behaviour correction programs. Compulsory education is provided for minors. Section 50.5 Paragraph 9 of the Sentence Execution Code of Latvia (hereinafter – Code) determines the rights of persons sentenced to temporary deprivation of liberty, namely, to shop in a prison shop for the minimum monthly salary set by the Cabinet, to use telephone calls without limit, as well as to use at least one hour of short-term meetings at least once per month, but not less than one short-term meeting during the execution of the sentence, if it is shorter than a month. Convicts sentenced to temporary deprivation of liberty also have the opportunity to meet relatives and other persons without the presence of a representative of the custodial institution temporarily in order to promote the maintenance and restoration of socially useful contacts. Convicted foreign citizens and convicts whose permanent residence is not in Latvia have the right to communicate with relatives, spouses and other persons by video call twice a month for a period of up to 15 minutes without the presence of a representative of the custodial institution. Taking into account that convicts sentenced to temporary deprivation of liberty serve the sentence only at the highest level of the sentence serving regime in a partly-closed prison, they have right to: • take walks or take part in outdoor sports for at least one hour a day; • receive (exchange) books in the prison library through prison staff; • watch television broadcasts in the presence of prison staff in a room outside the cell at the scheduled time; • attend services in the prison chapel and meet with the clergyman alone, to attend a psychologist's consultations; • wear personal clothing with the permission of the administration. However, the Code does not provide for persons sentenced to temporary deprivation of liberty to use long-term meetings with relatives or other persons and have an early conditional release, including with the establishment of electronic monitoring. In the case of temporary deprivation of liberty, convicts are allowed to receive one consignment or parcel per month or one consignment or parcel during the execution of a sentence, if it is shorter than a month.What is the security level of the infrastructure?
See answer to Question 1.Is it a different infrastructure than for other convicts?
See answer to Question 1.What does the regime consist of?
See answer to Question 1.Is the profile of the officers different from that for long-sentenced convicts?
See answer to Question 1.Are there any special activities?
See answer to Question 1.
- According to the provisions of art.219 para.2) of the Enforcement Code, there are 3 types of the regimes of detention: initial, common, resocialization, and regarding those sentenced to life detention: initial, common and facilitated. There is no any preferential regime for the established period of detention. Only art.205 of the Enforcement Code provides for the separate detention of convicts in the penitentiaries namely: a) women from men; b) juveniles from adults; c) persons under the pre-trial detention from the convicts; d) first time convicted persons from the convicted persons who have previously served their prison sentence and who have prior convictions; e) those sentenced to life imprisonment from the other convicts; f) convicts for committing the crime with participation - by the other participants of the same crime; g) convicts transferred to the initial detention regime as a disciplinary sanction – from the first time convicts at the initial regime; h) convicts who, by virtue of their previous positions, may be threatened with revenge by the other convicts; i) convicts who have the right to travel without escort or accompaniment from the other convicts. All these criteria do not depend on time limit specified by the court.What is the security level of the infrastructure?
According to the provisions of art.197 of the Enforcement Code, all convicts are detained in the guarded perimeter of the semi-closed and closed type penitentiary and only convicts who are established an open type penitentiary or who are granted with the right to move without escort (whose detention is higher over 3 years), have certain conditions of detention with free movement, but under the monitoring outside the territory of the penitentiary.Is it a different infrastructure than for other convicts?
All penitentiary institutions are equipped in accordance with the provisions of art.2211 of the Enforcement Code, namely with technical means of security, surveillance and control, which are established by the legal acts approved by the GovernmentWhat does the regime consist of?
According to the art.219 para.1) 3) and 4) of the Enforcement Code, the detention regime in the penitentiaries ensures the guarding, surveillance and isolation of the convicts, the execution of their obligations, the realization of their legitimate rights and interests, personal security and resocialization of convicts, including separately detaining of different categories of convicts, by diversifying of the conditions of detention according to the type of penitentiary established by the court and by changing the conditions for the execution of the sentence.Is the profile of the officers different from that for long-sentenced convicts?
The profile description of the penitentiary system staff are identical for all and do not depend on term of detention of the convicts, but can only be determined by the type of penitentiary.Are there any special activities?
Most offenders sentenced to imprisonment will receive a “standard determinate sentence” (SDS). Release from an SDS is automatic. In most cases, the offender must be released from custody at the halfway point, to serve the remainder of the sentence on licence in the community, subject to licence conditions and probation supervision, and liable to recall to custody if they breach the conditions of the licence. Those given an SDS of 7 years or more for specified serious sexual and violent offences will be released at the two thirds point of the sentence. Those serving an SDS of at least 12 weeks, but less than 4 years may be considered for release on Home Detention Curfew (HDC) up to 135 days before their automatic release date. They must have served at least a quarter of the sentence and, on release, they will be subject to an electronically monitored curfew for at least 9 hours per day, in addition to the usual licence conditions and supervision. Certain types of offender are excluded, such as sexual offenders and terrorist offenders, plus those with Category A or Restricted status (see question 2), but there is also a risk assessment. The HDC release decision is taken by the prison governor. There is an assessment and the offender must be able to be safely managed in the community and have a probation approved address to which they can be curfewed. The assessment of the suitability of the release address is undertaken by staff working for the probation provider for the area in question area, often by the officer who will be responsible for managing the offender in the community on release. The HDC release decision is taken by the prisoner governor or delegated to senior staff deemed competent for the role by the governor. Generally, HDC decision-makers will be based in the prison’s offender management unit. The Home Detention Curfew Policy Framework is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/home-detention-curfewWhat is the security level of the infrastructure?
When a person receives a custodial sentence for a criminal conviction, they are assessed for security risk and allocated to the lowest security category consistent with the assessed risk. Most prisoners are categorised and allocated to standard closed conditions. Adult male prisoners (from 21 years old) who need security measures additional to those in a standard closed prison may be categorised “B” and allocated to a category B prison. Some prisoners who are generally within three year of their earliest release date may be considered for open prison conditions if they are assessed as presenting a low risk or whose previously identified risk factors are now assessed as manageable in low security conditions. The above description does not include Security Category A prisoners: those whose escape would be highly dangerous to the public or the police or the security of the State and for whom the aim must be to make escape impossible. Neither does it include Restricted Status: any woman, male young person or young adult, convicted or on remand, whose escape would present a serious risk to the public and who is required to be held in designated secure accommodation.Is it a different infrastructure than for other convicts?
As aboveWhat does the regime consist of?
The Resettlement Prison Model for Operational Delivery (MOD), attached, was developed as a toolkit to assist prisons when designing their prisoner regime, activity offer and any specialist services provided to best meet the needs of prisoners within the resettlement phase of their sentence. The MOD provides, together in one place, a definition of the different groups of prisoners (cohorts), provides a high level understanding of their common risks and needs and lays out key evidence and statistics relevant to each of the different prisoner groups. The MOD then goes on to highlight key considerations related to different aspects of the regime including offender management, education, library, family contact, health and social care, substance misuse, safer custody and violence reduction and resettlement activity. Please note that this MOD is a little outdated having been developed in 2018. We are part way through their refresh but will not be in a position to share the refreshed MOD more widely for some time.Is the profile of the officers different from that for long-sentenced convicts?
NoAre there any special activities?
The breadth of work opportunities offered by Public Sector Prison Industries does not vary according to length of sentence, but is rather determined by risk. Prisoners employed in Public Sector Prison Industries workshops have the opportunity to work towards relevant industry qualifications, the length of sentence could determine the qualification offered.
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