Brazil’s Prison Population Almost Doubles in 8 Years. It’s World’s Highest Rate.

The situation of the Rio Interstate Police (Polinter), a police precinct that agglomerates prisoners in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, reflects a reality affecting the country’s entire prison system, says Marcelo Freixo.

Freixo is a historian and researcher with the non-governmental organization, Global Justice. “Jails nowadays are a very expensive tool. So, to deprive somebody’s freedom in the prisons, only if they really pose a danger to society,” he said.


The researcher represents one of the four organizations that endorsed a report containing accusations that Polinter inmates are obliged to sign a declaration assuming full responsibility for their own physical integrity, when they choose to remain in cells dominated by the criminal faction known as the “Red Command.”


The report, forwarded to the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Center, also reveals the “subhuman conditions and cruel and degrading treatment” to which inmates are submitted.


According to Freixo, the country’s prison population grew 93% between 1995 and 2003, compared with the international average of 30%. It is the highest rate in the world. He called for a profound debate on the application of alternative sentences in the country. These sentences currently represent 10% of the total.


He cited as examples the experiences of some Latin American and European countries and what has been done in the state of São Paulo – which concentrates 40% of Brazil’s prisoners – in which there are smaller prisons in the interior of the state, administered in a partnership between the government and the community, that have managed to reduce the degree of criminal recidivism and the instances of violence.


According to data that appear in the report, the 21 cells in the precinct house approximately 1,200 inmates, an average of 60 prisoners per cell.


The Global Justice representative considered the case extremely serious, and he said that Rio de Janeiro’s prison system has assumed the character of a social death penalty instrument, beginning the moment in which there are no prospects or project for the reinsertion of these individuals.


The report was produced by the organizations Global Justice, Torture Never Again, the Rio de Janeiro State University’s Laboratory for the Analysis of Violence, and the Rio de Janeiro Prison Reform Association.


Agência Brasil

Tags:

  • Show Comments (0)

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Ads

You May Also Like

Brazilian Highschoolers to Get Free Textbooks

In the past, the Brazilian government has distributed millions of textbooks to elementary school ...

Brazil May Reduce Deforestation by 90% in 10 Years, Says Environment Minister

Brazil may surpass the goal of reducing Amazon deforestation by 80% by 2020 and ...

Brazil Woos Germany with Biofuel and Tourism

The 23rd Brazil-Germany Business Encounter and the 32nd Meeting of the Brazil-Germany Economic Cooperation ...

Brazil’s State-Run Companies Spending Rises 277% with Lula

A report from Brazil’s Department of State-Run Enterprise Coordination and Governance (Dest), which is ...

Cover Story

If you haven’t been in Brazil during Carnaval then you don’t know Brazil. If ...

Lula Readies Truth Committee Bill to Punish Torturers from Brazil’s Dictatorship

Brazil is seriously considering naming a "truth committee" a quarter of a century after ...

Best-seller Books, Plays and Movies

By Brazzil Magazine PLAYS RIO Os Ratos do Ano 2030 (The Mice from the ...

The Poor, Lusterless Life of Brazil’s Buckaroos

For over 100 years, Brazil’s cowboys have earned a living and shaped a culture ...

Brazil Empire Through the Eyes of an Arab Imam

This is the only known record of the outlook of a Muslim Arab into ...