(photo credit: AP)
Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch announced a series of measures on Monday to ease the conditions of prisoners, as part of a bid to facilitate the rehabilitation process.
“As a society, we cannot spit the prisoners back into the street; we must do all that we can to return them as better, more helpful individuals to society and the country,” Aharonovitch said.
According to the new measures, every future prison cell must be no smaller than 4.5 square meters. In the coming years, Aharonovitch will seek to expand the cell size to the European standard of 6.5 sq.m.
Every cell will have a window to ensure exposure to outside air. Alternatively, other ventilation means will be installed in the cell.
Cells will be equipped with a bathroom and a sink, as well as a barrier to ensure the prisoner’s privacy.
Lights will be provided in every cell to allow for reading, and each cell will contain a reading table, shelves and chairs.
Meanwhile, during a speech to high school students in Petah Tikva on
Monday, Aharonovitch warned against the use of alcohol and drugs during
the upcoming summer vacation, as well as youth violence. During his
address, Aharonovitch said the narcotics market in Israel made an
annual profit of NIS 7 billion a year. Approximately 80 to 100 tons of
marijuana and hashish are smuggled into the country each year, as well
as 20 million Ecstasy pills and four to five tons of heroin, he said.
“These numbers are large, too large,” Aharonovitch said. “We must prevent and combat them.”