The Sierra Leone Correctional Service (SLCS) is currently working on a set of policies that will protect inmates’ rights to receive incentives for any service they render.
Past weekend, high powered delegation of the SLCS converged at the Corrections Officers Training School, Waterloo, to deliberate matters which will be factored into the operating procedure for incentives and earned privileges for inmates.
One of the two facilators of the workshop, cum the Director of Human Resources SLCS, Mr. Dennis Harman, informed the gathering that the inmates earning scheme will cover three informal employment categories: service workers, industry workers, and community service workers.
He said that no inmate will be forced to do any work, underscoring inmates will have to volunteer themselves to work in any of the said categories of service.
“The rates for incentive allowances,” he went on, “might range from 0.00 SLL per day to 1,000 SLL.”
All inmates will not receive equal amount for work, because there will be skilled (enhanced), semi- skilled (standard), and unskilled (basic) labourers among the lot, according to Mr. Harman.
“Apart from cash incentive, inmates who work will also be entitled to minor incentives such as tea, fruits, scraps of materials, and the use of plant and equipment for personal projects,” he noted.
Revealing the fact that each inmate will have his/her own account to which the daily amount will be credited on a weekly basis, Deputy Director General SLCS- Mr. Joseph Lamboi said it must be understood that the provision of work for inmates by the SLCS does not constitute a formal employment relationship.
” People should understand that we don’t give money to inmates for nothing; they earn it by working.”
It could be recalled that a major impediment to the establishment of a well functioning industry section within SLCS is that the inmates earning scheme is not in operation, albeit provided for in the Prison Rules of 1961, it is no longer efficate. It is against this backdrop that policies for inmates earning scheme are now being developed to be eventually encoded in the Sierra Leone Correctional Service Act 2014, upon review.
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