Life in prison not easy for Jewish inmates

June 22, 2009 by Community Editor
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Sydney’s JewishCare presents a play and discussion highlighting the conditions facing prisoners.

Currently, there are 45 Jewish prisoners in NSW jails. Dr Ilan Buchman of JewishCare has sent this report:

Jewish inmates are probably the most vulnerable group in the community. Many experience open hostility from other inmates because of their religion and are forced into protective custody for their own safety. The Jewish community itself shows little tolerance and acceptance of those who ended up in prison and for that reason Jewish inmates often feel isolated and rejected by their own community and the general community. Despite bringing the rate of reo fending among the Jewish inmates to 4.44% as opposed to 49% rate for the general prison population in NSW, JewishCare is not financially supported by the Department of Corrective Services and for the most part provides the extensive services through JCA and its own funding.

JewishCare’s Prison Outreach program aims to reduce the feelings of isolation exoerienced by inmates and to foster a sense of connection with the Jewish community.

Those involved in the program visit prisoners, deal with casework advocacy and counselling. They ensure inmates get appropriate food parcels for Jewish holidays and deliver them the Australian Jewish News. They also offer support to prisoners’ families and are on hand for counseling on release.

The play,  produced on June 25 at the Fitzroy Theatre, No Man’s Island, highlights life behind bars.

The Prison Outreach Program is co-ordinated by Rachelle Levy

Comments

One Response to “Life in prison not easy for Jewish inmates”
  1. julia and juan says:

    WHAT A FANTASTIC JOB RACHELLE LEVY IS DOING. THE LOVE AND DEVOTION SHE PUTS INTO HER JOB IS AMAZING.SHE IS AMAZING…..

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