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An open prison (open jail) is any jail in which the prisoners are trusted to serve their sentences with minimal supervision and perimeter security and are not locked up in prison cells. Prisoners may be permitted to take up employment while serving their sentence.
In the UK, open prisons are often part of a rehabilitation plan for prisoners moved from closed prisons. They may be designated "training prisons" and are only for prisoners considered a low risk to the public.
The idea of an open prison is often criticised by members of the public and politicians. However, prisoners do not have complete freedom and are only allowed to leave the premises for specific purposes, such as going to an outside job. In Ireland, there has been controversy about the level of escape from open prisons, attributed to the use of the prison by the IPS to transfer prisoners unsuitable for open conditions but to reduce overcrowding in the closed prisons.
Notable open prisons
- HM Prison Prescoed, Monmouthshire, South Wales
- HM Prison Ford, Ford, West Sussex, England
- Yerwada Open Jail, in Yerwada, Pune, Maharashtra
- HM Prison Castle Huntly, Longforgan, Perth and Kinross, Scotland
- Vardashen, Nubarashen, Yerevan, Armenia
- HM Prison Blantyre House, Goudhurst, Kent, England
- HM Prison Askham Grange, York, England
- Loughan House, Blacklion, County Cavan, Republic of Ireland
- Shelton Abbey Prison, Arklow, County Wicklow, Republic of Ireland
- HM Prison Leyhill, South Gloucestershire, England
Offener Vollzug in Germany
In Germany the "Offener Vollzug" is part of the rehabilitation process for about 16% of prisoners.
- UK Government: Types of prison and security categories
- Philip Davies, "It is completely ludicrous that a serving life-sentence prisoner is even in an open prison", BBC, 05 May 2014
- Erwin James, "Why life in an open prison is no holiday camp", The Guardian, 13 January 2011. Retrieved 16 August 2012
- Reilly, Michael (6 May 2009). "Annual Report 2008". Office of the Inspector of Prisons (PDF).
- Justizvollzug: Strafgefangene nach Geschlecht, Alter und Art des Vollzugs, voraussichtliche Vollzugsdauer Archived 2014-03-14 at the Wayback Machine. from the Federal Statistical Office of Germany