The Georgian participants with Thomas Müller (centre), Prison Director of the Karsruhe penal institution
The Georgian participants with Thomas Müller (centre), Prison Director of the Karsruhe penal institution

From 22 to 24 February 2018, a training course was held for aspiring trainers at the Georgian Penitentiary and Probation Training Centre (PPTC) in Rustavi, Georgia. The course dealt with the requirements for handling and caring for prisoners with special needs.

Employees working in various functions at penal institutions throughout the whole of Georgia took part in the training course, including:

  • social workers,
  • psychologists and
  • supervisory staff.

In future, they should be able to hold further training courses for prison officers on these topics and therefore act as disseminators. The event was opened by the Director of the PPTC, Avtandil Mikanadze.

The Prison Director of the Karsruhe penal institution, Thomas Müller, attended the event as an IRZ expert and speaker. The speaker started by looking at enforcing long terms of imprisonment (planning, organisation, preparation for release, psychiatric problems amongst prisoners). Based on recommendations from the United Nations, he then talked about the process of dealing with prisoners with special needs:

  • women,
  • youths,
  • senior citizens,
  • prisoners with disabilities,
  • members of ethnic minorities and
  • foreign prisoners.

The participants in this event were highly committed and motivated. During the group work, they started by identifying and discussing the problems involved in working with prisoners with special needs. Following on from this, they drew up some potential topics and objectives for training prison staff.