A neat house for prisoners shall be built by the prison in Burgas. The project is pilot and it shall be on a Norwegian model, with funding from the northern Kingdom.
The building will be located a few meters from the prison walls – in the area of the open-type imprisonment facility “Stroitel”, where there are still prisoners serving their lighter sentences. It will be on two floors and will have four fully furnished apartments for prisoners who are about to be released or whose sentences are short-term. The announcement was made before DarikNews by the Director of the Burgas prison, Senior Commissioner Branimir Mangarov.
“The conditions in these dwellings will be as close as possible to a life of freedom. The building in question will be built on a completely Norwegian model, and according to our foreign colleagues, this model gives very good results. The dwellings are of the “halfway house” type. They will accommodate 20-24 persons who will be responsible for the overall maintenance of their homes.” said Mangarov.
Whether the prisoners will be able to invite guests in the new house is a normative issue. Currently, a room for intimate visits is not planned. Only the female prisoners from Sliven can spend a couple of hours with their loved ones in a romantic setting, he explained.
The main objective of the program is reintegration in society. The prisoners who will be included in it will be able to work during the day and return to the house in the evenings. They will cook for themselves, they will clean – all thing not usually done in prisons. This will also eliminate the so-called “hotel syndrome” observed in imprisonment facilities where household duties are assumed by other persons.” added Senior Commissioner Mangarov.
GD for Execution of Penalties has already signed the contract with the Norwegian Financial Mechanism. The amount that would be granted for the construction is not clear yet. “We have to select a designer. We hope to have the project ready by the end of the year and the construction activities could begin even then.” said Branimir Mangarov.
Only four years ago, one of the most modern prisons in Bulgaria was opened in Debelt Village. The building was labelled a “jewel for millions” and the funds for its complete renovation and furnishing were again provided by the Norwegian Financial Mechanism.
A house for prisoners is planned to be built in Plovdiv as well. Currently, the imprisonment facility there is in a very poor condition. Burgas, according to the Director of the prison, has been selected for “we are open to develop more innovative approaches”.