Government says a farm programme in correctional services institutions has resulted in savings of one million dollars over four months on food consumed by the inmates.
Minister of State in the Ministry of National Security, Rudyard Spencer says the Agricultural Self-Sufficiency Programme has realised savings of approximately $1 million during the period December 2017 to March 2018 as inmates and wards continue to produce portions of the food they consume.
Mr. Spencer says projects being implemented by the Department of Correctional Services (DCS) have proven to be sustainable and have contributed to savings. Currently, inmates at all correctional institutions, with the exception of Horizon Adult Remand Centre, are engaged in agricultural production, JIS reported.
“This is encouraging, and we will continue to seek avenues that will result in greater cost savings,” Mr. Spencer said. He was addressing the opening of the Association of Caribbean Heads of Corrections and Prison Services (ACHCPS) Conference 2018 at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston on Monday (June 11).
“In a context of fiscal constraint, where every dollar counts and every decision must demonstrate value for money, I want to commend the Department of Correctional Services for the strides they have made in this area,” he added.
The State Minister told the conference delegates that inmates at the nation’s correctional facilities are being taught marketable skills, increasing opportunities for earning upon their release.
The four-day ACHCPS Conference is being held from June 11 to 14 under the theme ‘Transforming Prisons and Correctional Services for Regional Development’.