NO PRISON IN A COUNTRY?
“In seeking to severely penalize criminals society by putting the criminals away behind safe walls actually provide them with the means of greater strength for future atrocities glorious and otherwise.”
“There is no greater tyranny than that which is perpetrated under the shield of the law and in the name of justice.”
Why do we need criminal justice? Why do we need prisons? Why do we need to put someone behind bars for a period of time? Isn’t reformation of individuals the only correct answer for all the above questions? If so, is that the case in your country? Or in this world? Why is this question even coming up now? This might be your natural reaction right, Now the read the first quote and then read our story’s title! Yes there exists a country which has almost no prison, and all the remaining ones are getting closed due to no inmates and the new revolutionary system. Shocking isn’t it, the country is Netherlands !
“We work on two aims: number one, preventing another crime, and then on psychiatric suffering and the social problems that come with it,” says Hommo Folkerts, a forensic psychologist and outreach worker in Netherlands.
“We don’t treat people with just depression — it’s people with psychotic vulnerability, autism, severe learning difficulties, often in combination with severe personality disorders, addictions, financial problems, no good home or links with family, and often they are traumatized.Nobody would approve of the crimes or violence they have committed, but there is a very sad world behind them. If you want to mend all this, it will take a long time.”
A place where there are neither convicts nor prisons would be nothing less than a utopia, a heaven on earth, where even the gods of heaven would desire to live. People at Netherlands are following exactly the same steps and turning it into a heaven. As per reports from true and reliable sources, Netherlands has closed almost all its prisons and filled the remaining ones with inmates from other countries. Yes you read it right, due to lack of prisoners they are allowing other countries to send their accused here. Now what is the reason for such a sudden change?
It is due to the low incarceration rate which is the rate at which a national puts its criminals behind the bars in Netherlands. The country, its countrymen and the government believe in the rehabilitation of the prisoners, changing them, and helping them cope up with their social and other mental issues and help them to be a new individual. And if u ask me, has this helped? When has a perfectly humane plan with so much love and care failed! It did wonders there. Almost half of the criminals refrained from conducting any more crimes in 2018, says a report- that's actually a huge success!
Now the question is how do the officials monitor the prisoners ? They have libraries, gyms and other sports centers, drugs rehabilitation centers, spirituality and so much more. Also while releasing they are issued a watch like strap continuously monitor them with a well intention of the need to reform the offenders and help them start a fresh new life or continue their lost one.
There is also a special psychological rehabilitation program known as TBS. There were 1,300 people detained with a TBS ruling in 2018: people stay in a treatment center, sometimes after a jail term, and are treated for the psychological conditions that are thought to have played a role in their crime. Every two years, judges assess whether the treatment should be extended, and the average stay is two years. This has helped the country a lot too, low criminal rates lead to high secure feeling, travel and tourism, security of starting a new venture and new opportunities, focus on other developmental areas and so much more. This brings a balance to the entire system of the country.
What is stopping other countries from doing this ( including ours) ?, this is not a new idea to us, we have had so much theories and ideas in this area and even implantation of such ideas in our country long before the whole world. In fact a very old classical Tamil movie of MGR inspired me to find out more about such ideas and implementations elsewhere. The movie’s name is Pallandu Vaazhga which came in 1975:
Hope we learn a lot from Netherlands and change our system from pleading to release prisoners who were never proven guilty yet spent more than 30 years in prisons to a more humane and healthy support system following the concept of Universal brotherhood ( Vasudheva Kudumbakam) !