Netherlands to Close Prisons Due to Lack of Criminals

May 25th, 2009

Via: NRC Handelsblad:

The Dutch justice ministry has announced it will close eight prisons and cut 1,200 jobs in the prison system. A decline in crime has left many cells empty.

During the 1990s the Netherlands faced a shortage of prison cells, but a decline in crime has since led to overcapacity in the prison system. The country now has capacity for 14,000 prisoners but only 12,000 detainees.

Deputy justice minister Nebahat Albayrak announced on Tuesday that eight prisons will be closed, resulting in the loss of 1,200 jobs. Natural redundancy and other measures should prevent any forced lay-offs, the minister said.

The overcapacity is a result of the declining crime rate, which the ministry’s research department expects to continue for some time.

Belgian prisoners

Some reprieve might come from a deal with Belgium, which is facing overpopulation in its prisons. The two countries are working out an agreement to house Belgian prisoners in Dutch prisons. Some five-hundred Belgian prisoners could be transferred to the Tilburg prison by 2010.

The Netherlands would get 30 million euros in the deal, and it will allow the closing of the prisons in Rotterdam and Veenhuizen to be postponed until 2012.

2 Responses to “Netherlands to Close Prisons Due to Lack of Criminals”

  1. mondocratic Says:

    I’ll bet that there policies of drug decriminalization have a lot to do with this story. Now if we could begin something similiar in the USA, that would be great. I won’t hold my breath considering the USA lock up more people than China, India, and Russia combined… Despite the fact that China and India each have 3X more people than all of the USA.

  2. Larry Glick Says:

    America has become the Prison Nation. Although this is praised by our Gestapo leaders, one wonders if it does not simply add to the image of America as a nation of evil people.

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