Word from the Chair

Promoting good practices and standards in the execution of Prison and Probation sentences

Laura Negredo (Spain), PC-CP Chair

Welcome to the PC-CP website, which provides you with the most recent information related to the Council of Europe standards and principles in the field of execution of custodial and non-custodial penal sanctions and measures.

The Council of Europe is an important standard-setting organisation and a platform for exchange of experience and professional inspiration. The standards and principles are regularly reviewed and revised as necessary by the Council for Penological Co-operation (PC-CP) which is the expert committee working in this area. It is composed of 9 elected members who are renowned experts in the prison and probation field and who work in their personal capacity, and it also holds once a year a Plenary meeting with representatives of the 46 Council of Europe member States. 

The texts and work are approved by the European Committee on Crime Problems (CDPC) before the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe formally adopts the standards and the recommendations.

New phenomena are appearing in the field, new generations of staff are entering the prison and probation systems, new profiles of prisoners and probationers are affecting the rehabilitation methods and programmes. This increases the importance of the role played by the Council of Europe in supporting the national authorities of the member States in designing and implementing innovative penal policies based on the three main pillars of the Organisation: human rights, rule of law and democracy.

You will find in the Compendium a collection of the main texts related to our field of interest.

In addition, the Council of Europe Annual Penal Statistics SPACE I and SPACE II (collected since a number of decades already) put together a vast number of data related to prisons and probation. They are a very valuable source of information and of scientifically monitored numbers which assists not only policy deciders, professionals and researchers in Europe but also worldwide in analysing the situation with the execution of penal sanctions and measures in Europe country by country but also in gaining a comparative view of the evolutions across Europe.

Each year the Directors of the Prison and Probation Services of the Council of Europe member and observer States as well as representatives of UNODC, EU, EuroPris, CEP, ICPA and EFRJ meet at a high-level Conference to discuss the latest developments in the field and be updated on the most recent Council of Europe standards and recommendations.

Over the next two years, the PC-CP will prepare a draft CM Recommendation regarding the Promotion of Mental Health and the Management of Persons with Mental Disorders by Prison Services and Probation Agencies and an update of the Recommendation (89)12 on Education in Prison. 

The PC-CP Working Group and Secretariat:

Photo © Council of Europe: Elected members of the Council for Penological Co-operation (PC-CP) Working Group and Secretariat: Ilina Taneva (PC-CP Secretary), Jorge Monteiro, Maria Lindström, Dominik Lehner, Danijela Mrhar Prelić , Christine Coleur (PC-CP Secretariat), Laura Negredo López, Carla Ciavarella, Kim Thornden-Edwards, Paulina Tallroth, Frédéric Hankus.