FCS takes lead in treatment of sexual offenders

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Monday, 18 June 2018

THE treatment of sexual offenders is paramount as the country of Fiji experiences an increase in the number of sexual offences.

These sentiments were greatly echoed as the Fiji Corrections Service who in collaboration with Operation Foundation ran a workshop on the Treatment of Sexual Offenders for 80 of its officers at the Novotel Convention Center in Lami, today.

Operation Foundation is a Christian restorative organisation led by the Senior Pastor, the Reverend Peter Schultz in bringing renewal and transformation in the lives of prisoners and their communities in Fiji since 2006.

While opening the workshop, Deputy Commissioner of Corrections Senior Superintendent (SSUPT) Apimeleki Taukei said it has become a challenge to the Fiji Corrections to rehabilitate an offender well so they can become better citizens of our country and be trusted again by their loved ones.

Ït is important that our officers are equipped with the right skills and knowledge in terms of rehabilitating these inmates because their crimes are the type that greatly impacts communities,” said SSUPT Taukei.

“Research into sexual offending is a relatively new field of study with good progress made over the last 30 years.”

“There have been trials in a number of distinct approaches ranging from punitiver to reformative with differing evidence of effectivceness.

Reverand Peter Schultz said sexual offending has become a major problem for Fiji and the Fiji Corrections Service has now taken the leading role to build its capacity, to improve their response to this major problem.

“And I applaud them for this,’’ said Reverand Schultz.

“Over the years that we have worked together its exciting to see that rehab has continued to be at the front and always took the lead in the work they do in restoring lives.”

Ïn the month of May alone a total of 18 people were charged with a total of 29 counts which accounted for separate incidents in May. This was revealed in the Rape and Sexual Offences Statistics for May 2018 released by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution (ODPP) this week.

There are currently around 500 inmates incarcerated for sexual related crimes in the Fiji prisons.

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