- NSTP file pic
- NSTP file pic

KAJANG: There is a need for halfway houses to accommodate paroled female prisoners and former female inmates who are looking for jobs in order to help them reintegrate into society.

Prisons Department deputy director-general (Community) Datuk Ibrisam Abdul Rahman said currently, the department had 15 halfway houses for male prisoners.

"The Prisons Department still needs halfway houses for those who have no family or place to live after being released or after undergoing parole and the Licensed Release of Prisoners Programme (PBSL).

"So, we hope we can work with more non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to set up halfway houses and provide peer support to this group," he said when officiating at the Youturn Day 2023 programme themed "Welcoming Prisoners Back to Society" organised by the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) and Malaysian Care at the Kajang Prison Complex here today.

Halfway houses are provided by the Prisons Department in collaboration with NGOs to accommodate parolees and ex-prisoners who have just been released after serving a sentence of up to three months.

Ibrisam said the facility would enable the department to achieve its target of two-thirds of prison inmates undergoing community rehabilitation by 2030.

"The parole and PBSL programmes have helped 53,341 parolees and 9,602 released inmates to find jobs and reintegrate into society since 2008," he said.

Meanwhile, Suhakam vice-chairman Prof Datuk Noor Aziah Mohd Awal said the setting up of halfway houses should not be the responsibility of the government alone but required the participation of NGOs. - BERNAMA