Singapore Prison Service reports drop in rate of repeat offenders

Singapore Prison Service reports drop in rate of repeat offenders
PHOTO: The New Paper

SINGAPORE - Fewer ex-offenders are relapsing into criminal behaviour, according to statistics from the Singapore Prison Service (SPS).

SPS said in a statement that there has been a drop in the rate of repeat offenders for inmates released in 2013, as compared to those in 2011 and 2012.

The rate of recidivism, or relapse into criminal behaviour, dropped from 27.6 per cent for the 2012 cohort to 25.9 per cent for the 2013 one.

The SPS said it has plans to increase use of community-based programmes (CBP), which are tailored to the risk profiles of inmates, to rehabilitate suitable inmates at the tail-end of their sentences.

Under CBP, inmates determined to have strong family support could be placed on the Home Detention Scheme, where they can serve the remaining of their sentences at home if certain conditions are met.

Those who do not have a conducive home environment may be placed in halfway houses run by voluntary welfare organisations (VWOs) for a more structured framework of reintegration into the society. As for imates who are fit for employment, they will be placed on work release schemes to help them enter the labour force upon their release.

According to SPS, there has been an increase in the number of inmates securing a job before their release, with 2,042 inmates getting jobs in 2015, as compared to 1,865 inmates in 2014.

Inmates who are assessed to have a greater-risk of re-offence will be placed in a Mandatory Aftercare Scheme upon release, where they will undergo counseling.

prabukm@sph.com.sg

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