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30 inmates released in time for EasterPosted: April 6, 2012
30 inmates who were imprisoned for several months because of an inability to pay their fines for minor offences, have been released in time to spend Easter with their family and friends.
The release of the inmates came through the efforts of local charity organisation Food For The Poor.
In a release this afternoon (April 6) Food For The Poor says the act is the organisations largest Easter prisoner release programme to date, in which generous donors paid the prisoners’ outstanding fines to secure their freedom and reintroduce them to society as productive citizens.
Their release is part of Food For The Poor’s Prison Ministry Initiative, which is conducted during Easter and Christmas, each year.
Beneficiaries include inmates who have been incarcerated for minor, nonviolent offences.
This year nonviolent offenders were released in the Dominican Republic, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras and Jamaica.
24 inmates were released from the St. Catherine Adult Correctional Centre during a ceremony at the institution on Wednesday, March 28.
In addition to paying their fines, FFP also gave each released inmate a gift package containing toiletries and a stipend to assist with transportation and food while they travel to their various homes.
Four inmates were released from the Tamarind Farm Adult Correctional Centre in St. Catherine.
Meanwhile, 2 other inmates were released from the Half Way Tree and Kingston Central police stations.
As part of the initiative, inmates were encouraged to contact FFP Jamaica after the Easter holidays to benefit from the organization’s Fresh Start Programme that seeks to help former inmates to start sustainable, small-scale businesses.