Topic: Prison IssuesPress Release: LICADHO highlights alarming increase in female prisoner population to mark International Women’s Day
Published on March 7, 2013; The number of women and girls in Cambodian prisons continues to soar at an alarm-ing rate.
By mid-December 2012 there were 1,270 female inmates in the Cambodian prison system, an increase of 39% since December 2010. Women and girls represent 8% of prisoners in Cambodia but their incarceration rate has been growing four times faster than the male prison population.
Published on July 8, 2012; Two years after LICADHO first warned that Cambodia's prison population was spiraling out of control, growth has finally slowed - but prisons remain at more than 170% of capacity and the underlying causes of the crisis remain unaddressed.
LICADHO's third annual report on prison overcrowding and criminal justice reform updates an array of statistics on the prison population and reexamines recommendations that were made in previous reports from 2010 and 2011.
The report also details some of the underlying factors driving the overcrowding crisis. Most notably, LICADHO research shows that the number of inmates incarcerated for drug of offenses increased by a whopping 163% in 2011. And in 13 prisons surveyed by LICADHO, the total has nearly quadrupled since 2008.
Published on May 29, 2012; LICADHO and its partner NGOs will mark International Children's Day today by distributing food and materials to children and pregnant women in 14 of Cambodia's prisons.
LICADHO has also organized special Children's Day events at Correctional Center 2 ("CC2"), Kandal provincial prison, and Siem Reap provincial prison. The events will include games, prizes and guest speakers who will discuss children's issues.
Published on May 9, 2012; New government regulations take the important step of banning the export of prison-made goods, but fall short of fully protecting inmates from exploitation by private firms, according to a new briefing from LICADHO.
LICADHO believes that the export ban is an important step in protecting Cambodia's reputation as a reputable supplier in the international garment industry. But the prakas fails to fully ban private firms from using prison labor for domestic production, which leaves prisoners open to systematic rights violations.
Published on April 23, 2012; In 2010, LICADHO reported on an epidemic of in absentia criminal appeals trials in Cambodia. Hundreds of inmates were stranded in provincial prisons, unable to attend their hearings in Phnom Penh due to lack of transportation funding, poor organization between the prisons and courts and, more generally, an indifference to their plight. Two years later, the problem remains unaddressed.
As of February 2012, nearly 800 inmates with pending appeals were held in 11 provincial prisons surveyed by LICADHO. As was the case in 2010, the General Department of Prisons (GDP) still has no means to transport these prisoners to their appeal hearings in Phnom Penh. The prison system lacks the vehicles, gasoline, staffing and funding necessary for a comprehensive long-distance inmate transportation network. This report examines the scope of the problem and possible solutions
Published on October 19, 2011; A draft prison law which is set to go before the National Assembly is a positive step for Cambodia's prison system, but falls short of fully protecting prisoners' rights in several key respects.
The draft law's shortcomings are detailed in a new briefing paper from the Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights (LICADHO). The paper also highlights a handful of the law's positive provisions.
Published on July 4, 2011; One year after LICADHO warned that Cambodia's prisons were in danger of becoming the world's most overcrowded, the country's inmate population continues to spiral out of control.
In late April 2011, Cambodia's total prison population stood at 15,001, a 12.6% increase over March 2010. That figure brought prison occupancy to 179%, keeping Cambodia's prison system among the 25 most overcrowded in the world. The system could overtake the top spot by 2019 if current trends continue.
Published on June 1, 2011; Phnom Penh - LICADHO and friends will mark International Children's Day on June 1, 2011 by distributing food and materials to children and pregnant women in 14 of Cambodia's prisons.
In cooperation with prison department at Ministry of Interior, LICADHO will also hold special Children's Day events at Correctional Center 2 ("CC2") and Takhmao prisons. The events at CC2 and Takhmao will include games, prizes and guest speakers who will discuss children's issues.
Some 730 juvenile prisoners were incarcerated in Cambodia's 25 prisons as of April 2011, according to government statistics. The General Department of Prisons defines juvenile prisoners as those who were between ages 14 and 17 when they committed their crime; they may continue to be classified as juvenile prisoners if they reach their 18th birthday in prison. Fourteen is the age of criminal responsibility in Cambodia.
Published on March 8, 2011; The number of women and girls in Cambodian prisons has soared 41 percent since 2007, outpacing the already extraordinary overall growth rate of 29 percent during the same period.
At the end of 2010, a total of 914 women were incarcerated in Cambodia. An average of 12 of these women was pregnant; while an average of 47 young children were living alongside their incarcerated mothers.
LICADHO and its partner NGOs are marking International Women's Day this year by drawing attention to the plight of imprisoned women and children. LICADHO and its partners will deliver food and supplies to female prisoners at 18 prisons and hold special events at Correctional Center 2 ("CC2") and Takhmao prisons. The events at CC2 and Takhmao will include traditional dancing and games, as well as guest speakers who will spread out International Women's Day impression.
Published on July 19, 2010; Cambodia’s prison population is in the midst of an unprecedented population boom. Just six years ago, the 18 prisons monitored by LICADHO were at roughly 100% of their collective capacity1. Since then, the population has exploded, growing at an average rate of 14% per year. Prison capacity has also increased, but not nearly enough to keep pace with growth.
The General Department of Prisons (GDP) reported in March 2010 that the entire prison system held 13,325 inmates - 167% of the system’s 8,000-inmate capacity. The 18 prisons LICADHO monitors, meanwhile, were filled to 175% of capacity as of June 2010. As of December 2009, one third of all Cambodian prisoners - over 4,000 - were in pretrial status.
Published on June 12, 2010; In June 2009, LICADHO together with Horizons commenced a national survey of women living with their children in Cambodian prisons. The purpose of the survey was to identify the key problems faced by women and children during their incarceration, particularly in relation to food, clothing, health and hygiene; the extent to which services provided through the Adopt-A-Prison Project has helped to address these problems; and assess the need for educational and recreational programs for children living in prison.
Published on March 6, 2010; Over 500 inmates with pending appeals are detained in Cambodia's provinces, some of them hundreds of kilometers away from the nation's only appeals court in Phnom Penh. Due to Cambodia's near total lack of a long-distance inmate transportation network, these inmates are at grave risk of being denied one of the most basic elements of a fair trial: The right to have a conviction and sentence properly reviewed by a higher tribunal.
Published on February 5, 2010; In a touching act of compassion, ten musicians from Switzerland performed in prisons across Cambodia in January, providing a rare diversion and cause for joy among the prisoners. From January 17-30, 2010, the musicians went on a whirlwind tour, performing in 11 prisons throughout the country. The musicians are part of the organization Repris de Justesse which aims to bring music to prisons all over the world. Most of the musicians whom have other jobs and play locally in bars and clubs in Switzerland, paid for their own travel, food, and accommodations.
The objective of the tour was to provide some joy to prisoners who normally have little cause for celebration, and perhaps to alleviate some of the stress and depression that typically accompany prolonged confinement.
Published on March 6, 2009; This report aims to profile female prisoners and their experiences in the prison system and to provide an insight into the crimes they committed and the conditions they live in. Each case study is based on true accounts from prisoners, where names and details have been changed to protect the identity of the prisoners. This report also provides supplementary statistical information for relevant issues collected over the period 2007 and 2008.
Published on March 17, 2008; There are over 640 women currently detained in prisons all over Cambodia and on a day that is meant to celebrate women everywhere and promote the rights of women, LICADHO, partner NGOs, comedians and musicians spent the day remembering these vulnerable members of society.
On Saturday March 8 LICADHO and partner NGOs celebrated International Women's Day by distributing food, drinks, clothes and materials to female prisoners, children living in prison and female prison guards across 20 prisons in Cambodia. These donations are greatly needed in a prison system which must subsist on a budget of 1,500 riel (USD$0.38) per prisoner per day to cover the costs of food, water, electricity, clothing and medical care.