Modernization of the penitentiary system 22.03.2018
At the opening of Workshops Institution Product and Handicrafts Fair, Minister of Justice Abdulhamit Gül said that very important reforms have been made in the penitentiary field in Turkey, as in all other fields, in the last 16 years and added that they have modernized the penitentiary system.

Emphasizing that Workshops Institution Product and Handicraft Fair has always been organized in different parts of the country, Gül said that they realized the first one in Adana this year.

Stating that handicrafts produced by the prisoners in 66 penitentiary institutions are exhibited in the Fair, Gül noted that products are involved in the fair as a result of a social-purpose project, without a commercial concern. Expressing that very important reforms have been made in the penitentiary field, as in all other fields in the last 16 years, Gül continued as follows:

"In this reform process, both the structuring of prisons in compliance with international standards, and improvement efforts as well as increasing the education, cultural and social activities for convicted and detainees are planned and realized. During the period of AK Party governments, very important developments have been made concerning both the modernization of the penitentiary system and promotion of human standards. This approach and perspective have been reviewed with a human-centric manner. Of course, the main objective is the correction and reintegration of prisoners into society. Otherwise, it is not useful for the country or society to keep a person in a closed place. The main benefit is make the regulation for the correction and reintegration of that person to the society. Of course, one of the most important methods of correction and rehabilitation is to enable them to deal with an occupation. Because the people who produce, add value and benefit are very important gains for the society and social order. For this purpose, workshops institution has been carrying out these studies and has reached a level to become a role-model to the world today."

Noting that more than 52 thousand convicted and detainees are working in more than 1,700 workshops and about 180 business lines, Gül said that the mentioned works are continuing in cooperation with many institutions, especially universities, municipalities and İŞKUR (Turkish Employment Agency).

Gül stated that such services are given by various institutions, organizations such as Turkish Armed Forces, Ministry of National Education and universities, without seeking financial gain and provided that the commercial activities of the tradesmen and industrialists are not disrupted.

Minister Gül recalled that 6000 cattle and 8240 small cattle have been bred from 2017 until now with an aim to fulfil the needs of the prisons. He also underlined that the penal institution will undertake a crucial duty in the sectors of agriculture and animal breeding where developments are needed and therefore will contribute to the country's development to a great extent.

Emphasizing that the agricultural land of 16876 decares out of 31799 decares owned by the Penal Institutions are open cultivable land, he said "The whole area is cultivated. There is also greenhouse production. All of these activities will continue this year at an increasing speed."

LITERACY CAMPAIGN AT PENAL INSTITUTIONS

Minister Gül stated that detainees and convicts will give huge support to the literacy campaign launched by Emine Erdoğan, the spouse of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

"Our friends at the Ministry of Justice already started contributing to the campaign. 3628 detainees and convicts will take part in this campaign. Such educational activities already existed in Turkey, but today the prisons, penal institutions have been involved in the process. All penal institutions contain libraries. One million books are at the disposal of convicts and detainees. Our convicts, detainees are provided with every opportunity in the penal institutions to carry out their educational activities." he noted.

Following the talks, Minister Gül cut the ribbon at the opening ceremony with the Governor of Adana Mahmut Demirtaş, Director General for Penal Institutions Şaban Yılmaz, Department Head of Workshops Institution at Penal Institutions and Detention Houses under Ministry of Justice Murat Atan, Chief Public Prosecutor in Adana Ali Yeldan and other participants and he visited the stands.

Judiciary of Turkey