Inmates allowed to work outside prisons

By Viet Tuan   June 16, 2022 | 03:05 am PT
Inmates allowed to work outside prisons
Inmates at a prison in the central province of Binh Thuan work in a field in 2015. Photo by VnExpress/Duy Tran
Prisons under the Ministry of Public Security are allowed to cooperate with local organizations to let inmates work outside of jail.

The policy will be carried out in a pilot scheme to organize vocational training courses and then create jobs for inmates during the time they serve their sentences, according to a resolution approved Thursday by the legislative National Assembly (NA).

The resolution will take effect on Sep. 1 and last five years.

However, the number of prisons that can pilot this model is limited to less than one-third of the prisons under the ministry.

The ministry currently manages 53 out of more than 100 prisons across Vietnam. The remainder are managed by city or provincial police departments.

Inmates in one of the following cases will not be allowed to join the program: those who are foreigners, or under 18 or above 60; those who committed crimes infringing upon national security, crimes against humanity and peace; war criminals; those receiving sentences more than once; recidivism classified as dangerous; accomplices in cases of "particularly serious" crimes; those having a remaining prison sentence of more than seven years; those classified as serving a poor prison sentence; those that once escaped from a detention facility; those currently suffering from a group A infectious disease, which comprises dangerous infectious diseases with the ability to spread quickly and widely, have a high mortality rate or an unknown causative agent like Covid-19, H5N1, plague, smallpox, dengue fever, and cholera.

According to the NA Standing Committee, the Law on Execution of Criminal Judgments stipulates that labor is both an obligation and a right of prisoners and their labor regime according to this law is not within the scope of the Labor Code.

As reviewed by the government, the resolution fully meets the standards of the International Labor Origination’s conventions on forced labor and abolition of forced labor.

Inmates working under the pilot program in line with the new resolution will not be paid.

The results of their work, according to the Law on Execution of Criminal Judgments, will be used to improve inmates' daily meals and contributed to the Community Reintegration Development Fund.

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