Ma urges inmates to improve, start afresh
The China Post news staffTAIPEI, Taiwan -- President Ma Ying-jeou yesterday encouraged prison inmates to correct their errors and to start afresh, stressing that “an inmate saved is a family saved.”
March 17, 2013, 12:31 am TWN
Ma made the remarks when opening a job fair held yesterday morning by Changhua Prison in Central Taiwan for inmates. Also in attendance were Changhua County Magistrate Chuo Po-yuan, Justice Minister Tseng Yung-fu, and lawmakers Cheng Ju-feng and Lin Tsang-ming of the ruling Kuomintang.
There were 53 companies offering more than 500 job vacancies at the fair. Ma decided to attend the opening ceremony to show his concern for prison inmates and encourage them to turn a new leaf in their lives.
Upon arriving at the Changhua Prison, Ma was warmly greeted by inmates with a lion dance performance. He then examined a collection of elegant straw artworks and egg sculptures done by inmates, complimenting the excellent craftsmanship.
Ma said at the opening ceremony that he had made around 260 visits to prisons around Taiwan when serving as Justice Minister from 1993-1996, and thus had good knowledge of prison management. “After seeing elegant artworks at the Changhua Prison, I feel this is not a prison but a school and art group,” Ma said.
Ma continued that many inmates have been eager to correct themselves and start afresh, and therefore it's imperative for prisons to adopt soft and positive methods to guide inmates.
Ma stressed that “saving an inmate is tantamount to saving a family,” and therefore prison staffers should help inmates learn working skills so that they can make a living after returning to society.