Inmates being rehabilitated through entrepreneurial skills training
The Ministry of National Security says a large number of Jamaica’s inmates in the island’s correctional institutions are receiving skills training that will allow them to pursue entrepreneurial opportunities on their release back into society.
The skills training is part of the Ministry’s five pillar crime reduction strategy to create a safer and more prosperous Jamaica. The five pillars are swift and sure justice processes, rehabilitation and redemption, situational prevention, social development and effective policing.
Speaking on a tour of the Tower Street Correctional Centre last Thursday with members of the Diaspora and Operation Save Jamaica, Minister of State in the Ministry of National Security, Senator Pearnel Charles Jr. noted that the ministry is working extensively towards the development of programmes to support the smooth rehabilitation of inmates post incarceration.
“Across our eleven institutions we have a number of programmes to engage our inmates in skills training that will allow them to begin their own businesses when they leave the institutions,” Charles said.
Noting that there is currently a strain on the local job market, Senator Charles said that rather than having inmates struggle to find employment, thereby increasing the possibility of their reoffending, the Ministry wants them to not only receive skill training, but to be certified.
“Through our partnership with the Heart Trust NTA, inmates are currently receiving training in such areas as: computer technology, barbering, agriculture and jewellery making, and will receive certification on completion of the courses. Inmates also have the option of receiving literacy and numeracy training and can be educated up to CSEC level,” Charles stated.
The tour, which was organised by members of Operation Save Jamaica and the Ministry of National Security, served to give key members of the Diaspora the opportunity to observe the operations inside one of Jamaica’s prisons; witness the programmes in place for rehabilitation to see how they might give support aimed at reducing reoffending and, generally, work towards creating a safer and more prosperous Jamaica.