Prisons and Community Sanctions and Measures

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Conference on the theme “Making our community safer, exploring new possibilities for criminal justice and prison system”




Conference Review


Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)

Under the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) Project for the reform of the prison system in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Council of Europe organised a Conference on the theme “Making our community safer, exploring new possibilities for criminal justice and prison system”.

Where :

In Sarajevo on 21-23 September 2005.

Objectives :

The purpose of the conference was to debate areas of strategic need and, through a series of workshops, generate recommendations clearly focused on the needs of public safety, which the Council of Europe can discuss with the state authorities and can use to raise the profile of penal reform amongst the nation’s priorities. Key question was : What could actually be done over the next few years to develop a criminal justice system that is affordable and effective in offering the best protection to the public ? The following topics were on the agenda : key challenges of the penal policy and political input , the current situation and main problems facing the prison system, the development of non-custodial sanctions and services to offenders, the legal current situation in respect of alternative sanctions and measures, new ways of assessing prisoners, developing the professionalism of staff.

Participants :

80 influential persons from a variety of backgrounds were invited to debate these matters. Debate was prompted by a number of national, regional and international speakers and each stage of the conference generated conclusions.

Next :

The proceedings will be published and will be used by the Council in its future discussions with the state authorities on continuing development.