The Jordanian delegation at the Plötzensee prison
The Jordanian delegation at the Plötzensee prison

During a study visit to Berlin from 22 to 26 October 2018, members of a Jordanian delegation discussed the subject of “Classification, enforcement plans and the involvement of external parties as a basis for the successful reintegration of prisoners” with German experts. This visit by directors and deputy directors of Jordanian penal institutions provided them with practical experience and supplemented the seminar held in September this year in Amman on the same subject [LINK].

The first visit was to the women’s penal institution in Berlin. Here, Social Services Coordinator Carola Trömel and her colleague Sandra Rodrigues Silva provided general information on the prison and the specific features of women’s prisons, as well as on projects in cooperation with external providers. They discussed in more detail the “startklar” project, which offers advice and training on professional orientation and social reintegration for young women.

Afterwards, the Jordanian guests visited the Plötzensee prison, where they were welcomed by the Prison Director, Dr. Uwe Meyer-Odewald. This was followed by expert discussions with psychologist Andree and social worker Schulz. They explained the procedure for establishing an enforcement plan and presented various reintegration measures.

Over the course of the next two days, the delegation visited the open prison complex in Berlin, where director Thorsten Luxa presented the open prison concept, and the non-governmental organisation Violence Prevention Network e.V. Here, the Jordanian guests were able to learn about the structures of the cooperation between independent providers and prisons and about the measures used to deal with radicalised prisoners.

The three-day study visit gave the delegation an insight into the many different aspects of the German prison system and the cooperation with external parties. The Jordanian guests’ keen interest in the subject was clear from the interesting discussions and questions asked to the German partners. Even though they remarked that not all the measures could be implemented in Jordan due to differences in the initial situation, they were still extremely interested in learning about the German concepts. As a result, the study visit developed a greater awareness of the importance of individually adapted enforcement plans, which are implemented as well as possible under the local circumstances. The key role played by non-governmental parties was also discussed in detail and the potential for cooperation between prisons and non-governmental organisations in Jordan was talked through using examples.