A long road to detention being used as a last resort for children: a look at the UN Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty

This week in Geneva the UN Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty was presented after three years of research. The Study represents the first scientific attempt, on the basis of global data, to comprehend the magnitude of the situation of children deprived of liberty, its possible justifications and root causes, as well as conditions […]

Taghreed Jaber22nd November 2019

We are 30: Looking forward to the next decade

“It all started with a meeting…” 30 years ago, Vivien Stern, Ahmed Othmani and Hans Tulkens created Penal Reform International. They had in common the belief we still cherish, as stated by Nelson Mandela: “No one truly knows a nation until one has been inside its jails”. In other words, the health of criminal justice […]

Florian Irminger21st November 2019

UN reports that gendered stereotypes, economic deprivation, and experiences of violence and conflict are among underlying causes for women’s imprisonment

On 15 May 2019, the United Nations Working Group on the issue of discrimination against women in law and in practice published a new report evaluating the root causes of women’s deprivation of liberty. In this blog, Aldyen Krieger, a member of PRI’s policy programme, reflects on the unique path of victimisation and criminalisation many […]

Aldyen Krieger24th September 2019

Niñez que Cuenta: La cara invisibilizada de las políticas de drogas y el encarcelamiento

“Mi papá es genial.” ¿Cuál es su nombre? “Bernardo.” Cuéntame un poquito sobre él. ¿Qué te gustaba hacer con él? “A mí me gustaba jugar, a veces me dejaba ir a la callecita [calle de la comunidad], o con mi mamá, y él jugaba conmigo.” ¿Y por qué no juegas más con Bernardo? “Porque está […]

Corina Giacomello and Luciano Cadoni24th September 2019

Childhood that matters: The invisible face of drug policy and incarceration

“My dad is great.” What’s his name? “Bernardo.” Tell me a bit about him. What did you like to do together? “I liked to play. Sometimes he would let me go out to the street [in the neighborhood], or with my mom, or he would play with me.” Why don’t you play with Bernardo anymore? […]

Corina Giacomello and Luciano Cadoni24th September 2019

Developing restorative justice in law, policy and practice: Learning from around the world

Restorative justice is a practice in which the person(s) who were harmed by a crime, and those who were responsible for that harm, are brought into communication. In this blog, Dr. Ian Marder discusses the implementation of restorative justice in some key jurisdictions, focusing on their legislation, policies and models of service provision. Restorative justice […]

Dr. Ian D. Marder10th January 2019

A community sentence for women with mental health needs

Image: The Good Loaf Cafe.  Where studies of mental illness have been conducted with prison populations, the prevalence has been consistently shown to be high.[1] Women offenders’ mental healthcare needs can be even higher than men’s, often as a result of violence and trauma. Community-based sentences are more effective in reducing reoffending and providing support for […]

Olivia Rope1st November 2018

Restorative justice and the Council of Europe: an opportunity for progress

Recently the Council of Europe updated their guidance on restorative justice – processes that bring those harmed by crime or conflict, and those responsible for the harm, into communication, enabling everyone affected by a particular incident to play a part in repairing the harm and finding a positive way forward. In this blog Dr Ian […]

Dr. Ian D. Marder4th July 2018

Global Prison Trends 2018: a global view on the state of prisons

PRI has launched its annual flagship publication, Global Prison Trends 2018. Here we publish the foreword to the report, written by the Rt Hon Helen Clark, a Member of the Global Commission on Drug Policy, Former Prime Minister of New Zealand, and Former Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme. Every year, Global Prison Trends by […]

Rt Hon Helen Clark15th May 2018

In Brazil, prison riots and killings expose the structural failures of mass incarceration

In 2017 alone, at least 119 people were killed during prison riots in Brazil, while other prisoners have simply disappeared. Henrique Apolinario, a lawyer at Conectas Human Rights, discusses what needs to be done in order to avoid further tragedies and to address the underlying causes of the crisis. 2017 started with terrible news in Brazil. […]

Henrique Apolinario28th March 2018