Israel Prison Service
The Israel Prison Service (Hebrew: שירות בתי הסוהר, Sherut Batei HaSohar, Arabic: إدارة السجون الإسرائيلية, Idārat al-Sujūn al-Isrā’īlīyyah), commonly known in Israel by its acronym Shabas (שבס) or IPS in English, is the prison service of Israel. It is responsible for maintaining civilian prisons in Israel, as well as detention centers for security prisoners. It is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Public Security. In 2008, the IPS employed 7,791 workers.
In 2008, there were 32 correctional facilities, including five detention centers, housing a total of 25,000 prisoners. 60% were serving time for criminal offenses and 40% for security offences. In December 2011, there were 17,755 prisoners in Israel Prison Service facilities, including 307 administrative detainees held without trial. Of these detainees seventeen had been detained for between two and four and a half years. One had been detained for more than five years.
Prisoners' rights 
The conditions in Israeli prisons are reported to meet international standards. Prisoners are entitled to visits from their lawyers and family members, and security prisoners are allowed Red Cross visits. They have the right to file grievances about their conditions to the courts, the Israel Prison Service management and the Israel Police Unit for the Investigation of Prison Service Personnel.
Inmates who were not convicted of terror offenses also have the right to free university education; under a special education program in which they take online academic programs from the Open University of Israel, and their tuition is financed by prison authorities. This right was also allowed for imprisoned terrorists until 2011.
According to the 2011 US Human Rights report, prisoners and detainees were granted access to visitors, with the exception of those whose families live in the Gaza Strip. Prisoners are free to practice their religion, and permitted to submit petitions to judicial authorities if they are dissatisfied with prison conditions. IPS facilities, interrogation facilities and IDF provisional detention centers are regularly monitored by the International Committee of the Red Cross.
Privately run prisons 
Plans for privately run prisons have been on the drawing board since 2006. The state hoped to save money by transferring prisoners to such facilities, which would eliminate the need to invest in more infrastructure and manpower. In 2009, the Israeli Supreme Court ruled that private prisons are unconstitutional. Following the decision, the state will have to pay compensation to a company that has already completed construction of the first private prison, near Beersheba. 
List of prisons and detention centers 
North Bloc 
- Carmel Prison (Oren Junction)
- Damun Prison
- Gilbo'a Prison (HaShita Junction)
- Hermon Prison (North Tzalmon Creek Junction)
- Megiddo Prison (Megiddo Junction)
- Shata Prison (HaShita Junction)
- Tzalmon Prison (North Tzalmon Creek Junction)
Center Bloc 
- Ashmoret Prison (HaSharon Junction)
- Ayalon Prison (Ramla)
- Giv'on Prison (Ramla)
- HaSharon Prison (Hadarim Interchange)
- Maasiyahu Prison (Ramla)
- Magen Prison (Ramla)
- Neve Tirtza Prison (Ramla)
- Ofek Juvenile Prison (Even Yehuda)
- Rimonim Prison(Even Yehuda)
South Bloc 
- Dekel Prison
- Eshel Prison
- Ktzi'ot Prison (Ktzi'ot Junction)
- Nafha Prison
- Ofer Prison (Atarot area)
- Ramon Prison
- Shikma Prison (Ashkelon)
Detention centers 
- Eilat Detention Center
- Hadarim Detention Center
- Jerusalem Detention Center
- Kishon Detention Center
- Nitzan Detention Center
- Ohalei Kedar Detention Center
- Petah Tikva Detention Center
- Tel Aviv (Abu Kabir) Detention Center
Prison service training 
The current ranks (circa 2007). Their military equivalent is shown in parentheses.
Soherim (Jailers) 
They wear their rank insignia on their upper sleeves.
- Soher - Warder
- Rav Soher - Chief Warder (Corporal)
- Samal - Sergeant
- Rav Samal - Chief Sergeant (Staff Sergeant)
Nagadim (Non-Commissioned Officers) 
They wear their rank insignia on their collars.
- Rav Samal Rishon - Chief Sergeant First Class (First Sergeant)
- Rav Samal Mitkadem - Master Chief Sergeant (Sergeant Major)
- Rav Samal Bakhir - Command Chief Sergeant (Command Sergeant Major)
- Rav Nagad - Chief NCO (Warrant Officer)
Katzinim (Officers) 
They wear their rank insignia on their epaulets or shoulderboards.
- Meyshar Mishne - Junior Inspector (2nd Lieutenant)
- Meyshar - Inspector (1st Lieutenant)
- Kalai - Superintendant (Captain)
- Rav Kalai - Chief Superintendant (Major)
- Sgan Gundar - Deputy Commissioner (Lieutenant Colonel)
- Gundar Mishne - Junior Commissioner (Colonel)
- Tat Gundar - Assistant Commissioner (Brigadier General)
- Gundar - Commissioner (Major General)
- Rav Gundar - Chief Commissioner (Lieutenant General) - Commander of the prison service.
Special units 
Metzada (named after Masada) is IPS's quick response and intervention force and specializes in suppression of prisoner uprisings, especially in prisons containing Palestinian detainees. It consists mainly of special forces veterans from the IDF.
Nahshon is the IPS's main intervention and conveyance unit and deals with searches, silencing disturbances, guarding IPS staff, etc.
Yamar Dror, founded at the end of 1993, is the IPS unit for fighting narcotics. It specializes in searches and interrogation.
- Giri Gera (1949–1951)
- Ram Salomon (1951–1952)
- Zvi Hermon (1952–1958)
- Aryeh Nir (1958–1976)
- Haim Levi (1976–1981)
- Mordechai Wertheimer (1981–1985)
- Rafael Suissa (1985–1986)
- David Maimon (1986–1987)
- Levy Shaul (1987–1990)
- Gabi Amir (1990–1993)
- Aryeh Bibi (1993–1997)
- Amos Azani (1997–2000)
- Orit Adato (2000–2003)
- Ya'akov Ganot (2003–2007)
- Benny Kaniak (2007–2011)
- Aharon Franco (2011–date)
See also 
- "الهيئات التي تقع تحت مسؤولية وزارة ووزير الأمن الداخلي." Ministry of Public Security. Retrieved on 7 March 2011.
- Israel Prison Service. Ministry of Public Security. Retrieved on 7 March 2011.
- "Staff Statistics – Total Staff per Bloc". Israel Prison Service. Retrieved 2009-07-03. (Hebrew)
- US human rights report 2011
- Foreign press tours of Israel's prisons
- US human rights report 2011
- US human rights report 2011
- International legal precedent: No private prisons in Israel
- Kosti, Nir (July 17, 2009). "IPS Special Forces will Train (IDF) Guards". Bamahane (Issue 2997): p. 16. (Hebrew)
- "Metzada Unit" (in Hebrew). Retrieved 2007-10-05.
- "Nahshon Unit" (in Hebrew). Retrieved 2007-10-05.
Further reading 
- Israel Behind Bars: True Stories of Hope And Redemption, ISBN 0-9776736-0-X, by Major (retired) Rabbi Fishel Jacobs.