IPS attends Latin America Justice Ministerial Conference in Costa Rica Silvia Bernardo December 16, 2014

IPS attends Latin America Justice Ministerial Conference in Costa Rica

The objective of the forum was to compare policies and seek joint solutions to problems that have many similarities across the region.

Latin American ministers, deputy ministers and heads of prison administration signed the “San Jose Declaration on the promotion of social inclusion of persons deprived of liberty“ at the Ministerial Conference “Improving the effectiveness of correctional policies in Latin America: the effective integration of people in conflict with the law” that took place in San José, Costa Rica, on the 15th and 16th December 2014.

The Ministerial Conference was organized by the Conference of Ministers of Justice of Ibero-American Countries (COMJIB) and the International Juvenile Justice Observatory (IJJO) in the framework of the EUROsociAL Programme of the European Union, gathering ministers, senior officials and heads of penal institutions from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, Panama, Dominican Republic, Uruguay, and Mexico.

At the inaugural event, Mr. Luis G. Solis, the President of Costa Rica noted that “social and professional insertion policies targeting persons deprived of liberty must be seen as any other fundamental public policy such as education and health provision. “Besides our countries cannot afford to miss a single good idea and contribution, including the ones of these men, women, and youth. When we talk about social insertion policies for prisoners we are also talking about democracy, fairness and mutual respect” he noted.

Cristina Ramirez Chavarría, Minister for Justice and Peace of Costa Rica, reinforced that social insertion of persons deprived of liberty is both timely and should be geared towards improving prison policies in Latin America. “Both the Ministries of Justice and penal institutions are convinced that the momentum of the policies that have been approved facilitate the reintegration of sentenced persons, who are one of the most vulnerable,” concluded the Minister.

Pedro das Neves, representing both IPS_Innovative Prison Systems and BSAFE LAB addressed the audience on “standards, adapted detention infrastructures, management, and financing models” and moderated the discussion between the justice ministers and heads of prison administration from Brazil, Uruguay, El Salvador and Honduras about this critical issue in penitentiary policy. 


For further information about the Ministerial Conference and/or IPS’ intervention in Latin America, please contact ips@prisonsystems.eu