April 19, 2021

Within the EU funded project „Improving Capacities of the Prison Administration in The Area of Alternative Sanctions, Post Penal Care and Healthcare”, whose beneficiary is the Administration for Enforcement of Penal Sanctions, the new workshops treatment officers and commissioners were organised.

The legislation of the Republic of Serbia sets good gourds for pre-release programmes and post penal care of ex-convicts, in accordance with all international recommendations and standards and according to the statics of majority of the EU countries the highest rate of recidivism amongst convicts happens during the period just after the release if a proper post penal support is not provided. Thus, we have developed a Pilot project that should help sat an initial framework for implementation of the interinstitutional cooperation on re-integration of ex-convicts into society. As decided, the Pilot project will start with five chosen convicts who will be released soon from the Penal Correctional Facility (PCF) in Požarevac

The workshops for Commissioners (in towns the convicts will be release to) and treatment officers from PCF Požarevac who are included in this Pilot were held on the 25th and 26th of February 2021. Due to the current epidemic situation, the participants were divided into two groups, in order to comply with all the health-safety measures.

After a general presentation of the Project and the results so far, personal introductions were held and thereafter the treatment officers and commissioners worked together with the trainers on assessing the needs of convicts included in this pilot project. The participants were also prepared to directly work with convicts, as well as with local communities. At the end of this training session, the participants drafted a Plan for implementing release preparations and assistance upon release.

The various sessions where at the end evaluated as dynamic and extremely useful; especially in terms of cooperation and exchanging information. These workshops are only one of many activities planned within this Pilot project and Soon we hope to be able to present the first concrete results, that can be used to further shape an effective Serbian Post Release Program that is in line with modern global standards and that is grounded on an efficient system of mutual support of all governmental institutions. Because this is what makes communities evidence based safer.