The building of a new hostel at the Vratsa Prison has begun. It will have a capacity of 250 prisoners and will meet all European requirements.
Building work on the renovation of the existing building, which is next to the prison and its transformation into a modern penitentiary, started today and should be completed within a year. The event was attended by the Deputy Minister of Justice Emil Dechev, the Chief Secretary of the Ministry and Head of the Program Operator of the Justice Programme Desislava Gaidarova, the Director General of the General Directorate Execution of Sentences Chief Commissioner Ivaylo Yordanov (GDES), Commissioner Nina Glavchovska - Head of the Regional Service for the Execution of Sentences -Sofia and Head of PDP 1 "Ensuring a safe and secure material environment in prisons and detention centers" the Head of Vratsa Prison Senior Commissioner Ivan Spasov and other guests.
The investment project envisages major repairs and rebuilding of all existing rooms and halls and their separation into bedrooms with separate bathrooms. There are also plans to build bathrooms, a kitchen block, a sports hall and a meeting room, a shop (mixed shop), a laundry room, and rooms for the supervisory and administrative staff. In the yard, in addition to outdoor areas, are designed alleys, green areas and sports grounds for volleyball, basketball and mini football.
The new prison hostel will accommodate the prisoners who until months ago were in the so-called “Ceramic Factory” hostel. The poor living conditions in it have been criticized for years by national and international institutions, and in his reports the ombudsman has repeatedly recommended its closure. At the moment, the prisoners from the “Ceramic Factory” are serving their sentences in Boychinovtsi.
The funds for the rebuilding and repair of the new buildings in Vratsa are grants under the Justice Programme under the Norwegian Financial Mechanism 2014-2021 /NFM/ and amount to BGN 1 million 614 thousand. The site is part of the project "Ensuring a safe and secure material environment in prisons and detention centers", and it also lists infrastructure facilities. It is envisaged that in the "Hebros", "Samoranovo" and "Stroitel" prison hostels, respectively to the prisons in Plovdiv, Bobov Dol and Burgas, to have separated transitional wards /”half-way house”/. The aim is to introduce a new social integration concept for the adaptation of prisoners when they return to society. A new detention center and probation service will be built in Petrich and a new detention center in Samoranovo.