Online training being mulled for prisoners’ rehabilitation – Director of Prisons (ag)

DPI, Guyana, Friday, February 16, 2018

The Guyana Prison Service (GPS) is considering the introduction of online training as efforts to rehabilitate inmates and reduce recidivism continues.  This was disclosed by Acting Director of the GPS, Gladwin Samuels, in a recent interview, with the Department of Public Information (DPI).

Director of Prisons (ag) Gladwin Samuels.

“I am quite sure, as it relates to broadband becoming something readily available across Guyana more and more every day, soon we will be able to tap into that aspect of training. So that those high-profile prisoners who we know are in need of exposure to training, but for various reasons cannot be placed into the general population, will be able to enhance themselves,” Samuels explained.

In addition, the Acting Director said this practice is already being utilised in facilities around the world. He noted that with the necessary precautions in place to prevent access to unauthorised websites, the introduction of technology-assisted training will reduce the hindrance caused by the unavailability of space for training within the prison facilities.

“I recognise as well, they are making adequate use of that sort of technology, internet-based training for inmates, where they have their own computer or tablet and a number of programmes are actually pre-downloaded to the instrument, which are prevented from accessing unauthorised websites,” the Director added.

According to Samuels, the institution is also focusing its energies on attracting a higher quality staff while providing training opportunities for those currently on staff, to upgrade their skill set wherever necessary and possible.

“What we are also doing is ensuring that we do not only build the capacity of prisoners but also ensuring that staff is adequately exposed to training. This is not only institutional training but at the technical and tertiary levels so that they can be able to offer even more to those prisoners in terms of security. It is always important that we pay attention to security and we are trying to boost our capacity in terms of our intake of staff. We have 39 recruits currently in training.”

Further, Samuels told DPI that, the Prison Service is in a better position to realise its role of inmate reformation. It has received assistance from the British Funded Security Sector Reform Project (SSRP) and the Inter-American Development Bank’s citizen Security Strengthening Programme (CSSP) toward this end.

By: Kidackie Amsterdam

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