Want to learn more about costs for prisons in France? Read our guide for facts and info on why it costs so much to maintain the French prison system …
In recent years there has been much hue and cry over the high costs of maintaining prisons in France. As the number of inmates continues to rise by an alarming rate the law-abiding citizen suffers because of increased taxes. The French prison system places further burden on the taxpayer because it costs almost twice as much to imprison a criminal than it does to supervise an individual through payroll.
While statistics reveal that it takes about $25,000 annually to supervise an individual through payroll, it shows that the costs rise to $43,000 when it comes to incarcerating a criminal. Furthermore a great number of armed supervised transitions have been made from prisons which are leading to more crimes and an increasing number of victims. This is because when an ex-inmate gets out in the public and does not have a payroll supervision it is all the more likely for that person to go back to prison by committing some crime. On the other hand individuals supported by a payroll system are less likely to end up the same way.
The current administration in France has eliminated the option of doing more time in prison for no post-release supervision. This has resulted in more availability of space in French prisons. However, there are efforts being made to transform this problem into a non-issue. The administration has initiated a mandatory supervision for all criminals that have served time in the state prison. This supervision amount has been set to 25% of the individual’s sentence. The minimum duration for this program has been set to nine months with the maximum level being five years.
Although these efforts may help to bring the crime level down in ex-inmates it is likely to place an even heavier burden on the taxpayers. The current prison system is overtaxed where as the prisons themselves lack adequate space to house the number of inmates that are allocated to them. Often times we find prisons in France to be housing many more inmates than they have the capacity to provide accommodation for. This obviously results in more resentment amongst the inmates and is causing a serious problem for the country.
There is a serious need to resolve the high costs of maintaining prisons in France and a number of politicians are looking to tweak some policies around so as to bring a positive change in the system. The main focus of the reform is to get rid of the major loophole that allows prisoners to spend more time in jail so that they can avoid payroll supervisions upon their release.
Many prisoners actually choose this option. This bogs down the system further and results in higher recidivism rates. Statistics have revealed that over five hundred prisoners a year would much rather stay in prison in order to avoid the parole supervision. This is a strange situation but it is a serious problem for the French who are thinking of ways in which they can effectively reform the system.