The IFP believes that provinces should play the central role in correctional services, that all categories of crime should be punished in provincial institutions and that criminals should be dealt with as closely as possible to the communities in which their crimes were committed.
In order to allow flexibility in dealing appropriately with criminals, sentences should not be subject to maximum or minimum recommendations.
Community service should play a much larger role in the punishment of criminals for minor crimes. However, the decision to use community service as opposed to a prison sentence should never be based upon the consideration of available prison accommodation.
Parole and probation are privileges to be extended only to deserving prisoners.
Rehabilitation programmes should be rooted in literacy, numeracy and appropriate vocational training. Prisoners should spend most of their time in productive work linked to incentives to encourage co-operation and willing participation in prison regimes. Prison costs should be reduced by keeping prisoners productively employed.
Categorisation of prisoners
Prisoners should be categorised on the basis of their offences, and potential for rehabilitation, through the development of diagnostic centres. Treatment of prisoners should, as far as possible, conform with categorisation parameters.
Children and juveniles should not be incarcerated with adults, and young persons should not be exposed to the full rigours of prison life. Cases involving young persons should be expedited to reduce exposure to hardened criminals and Youth Centres should be established to deal with young offenders. All Places of Safety providing maximum security facilities should fall under the department of Correctional Services.
Where possible, consideration should be paid to the family obligations of female offenders involved in lesser crimes.
The IFP supports the holding of a referendum on the death penalty.
Private sector involvement
The IFP favours private sector involvement in the funding and construction of prisons, with the state assuming ownership over specified and agreed time frames (Build-Operate-Transfer arrangements).
Correctional services personnel
Personnel-to-inmate ratios in prisons must be improved and sufficient prison accommodation be found to secure convicted criminals.
In making correctional services appointments, the IFP supports affirmative action so long as efficiency and standards are not compromised. Affirmative action should be implemented by adopting appropriate recruitment practices.
Corruption in Correctional Services should be severely punished.