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Management of Aged and Frail Offenders in Custody

Consistent with its values and international standards, ICPA recognises that aged and frail persons in custody or under supervision in the community have special needs that will vary according to their social, economic and health conditions.
The following principles for managing aged and frail persons in custody and support them if supervised in the community are recommended for consideration by correctional agencies for inclusion in agency policy. They are to:

  • Treat the older offenders in custody humanly and in a manner which takes into account the specific needs of aged and frail persons.
  • If necessary, due to physical or mental disabilities, place aged and frail offenders in adapted cells and facilities to meet their most basic needs and stimulate social interaction.
  • Keep aged and frail offenders in smaller facilities or units to enable them to have an as normal life as possible and to protect them from violence, extortion and exploitation by other offenders.
  • Keep solitary confinement of aged offenders to the absolute minimum for use only in extraordinary circumstances with the objective to returning the individual to a normal management regime as soon as safely possible.
  • Meet the nutritional requirements of aged and frail offenders.
  • Provide adequate medical care through appropriate health facilities and services with special attention to age-related medical conditions.
  • As provided in legislation consider petitions for compassionate release or medical parole for terminally ill or progressively disabled offenders.
  • Provide appropriate palliative care for offenders at ‘end-of-life’ to allow autonomy as much as possible and death with dignity.
  • Provide special programs, therapy and counselling that address the needs of older offenders.
  • Provide opportunities for appropriate work and an adequate system of remuneration.
  • Provide aged and frail offenders with the rights to maintain contact with the family through correspondence and visits.
  • Place age and frail offenders as close as possible to home to help maintain contacts with family members.
  • Improve the training of staff with reference to the special problems and needs of aged offenders.
  • Improve close cooperation with organisations in the community to ensure a continuum of care in the community following release.

This founding statement of ICPA was approved by the ICPA Board of Directors on July 2016 and ratified by the members of the Corporation on the Annual General Meeting in  Bucharest Romania 25 October 2016