June 24, 2007

A Prison Community Radio to Aid Rehabilitation

Carribbean : A prison radio is developed to enhance prisoner rehabilitation and education in the Carribbean. The Department of Correctional Services (DCS) and the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in collaboration with the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) are unveiling a prison community radio today at the Tower Street Adult Correctional Centre. This innovative use of a Community Multimedia Centre is the first of its kind in the Caribbean.

It seeks to enhance prisoner rehabilitation and education while connecting prisoners with their external environment, where discourse can occur between inmates, their families, the church and other rehabilitative elements of civil society. The DCS sees this prison community radio project as a great opportunity for advancing its recently developed Life Skills Programme which purposes to empower prisoners for a smooth re-entry into society as peaceful law-abiding citizens.

As an integral part of the project, UNESCO has also commissioned the Ethnographic Action Research to document the use of these technologies as tools for prisoner rehabilitation and education and how the CMC will impact relationships between the various stakeholders of the prisons. Findings will be disseminated through the publication of a booklet that includes needs and guidelines for implementing special access to information and communication technologies in prison communities.

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