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  #1  
Old 11-23-2009, 09:26 AM
barney11 barney11 is offline
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Default Singapore's prison extremely harsh and inhumane

Singapore's prison conditions are extremely onerous.

In the "newly renovated" Changi prison, the prison that houses almost all the inmates in Singapore, the inmates sleep on hard concrete floor with no proper beds. They are only given a very thin straw mat.

They are locked in a small cell 23 hours a day. They get no outdoor exercises, all their exercises are conducted indoor. They don't get open air for the duration of their sentence. This can be for years!

There are no fans or air conditioning despite the country's extreme heat (30-40 degree celsius in the cells) and humidity, being near the equator.

Inmates are not allowed any personal possessions, like radio, tv, personal clothings etc. They are not even allowed to keep a pen and paper with them.

The inmates basically are allowed zero personal belongings except 3 softcover books. Hardcover books are not allowed, don't ask why, it is just another rule that doesn't make sense and is created to drive the inmates nearer to insanity.

Maybe hardcover books are deemed to be highly dangerous. Imagine it could turn into a highly lethal weapon should it fall into the wrong hands

Telephones are not allowed and they can only write 1 or 2 letters every fortnight.

Inmates are not allowed to keep photographs of their family. They require special permission from their CO should they wish to do so.

Inmates' heads are shoven and they have to behave like soldiers. They must greet the COs when they see them. They must walk in one single file (Not like they walk around much given how claustophic the entire place is. The prison is a tall multi story block and the work locations often just in the vincinity of their cells. Everything is indoors.) and keep their hands at their back when talking to their COs, failing which they are liable to get punished.

Not everyone gets to work. Work is often mundane and repetitive. An example is laundry work. It doesn't inpart any "real" skill.

Some inmates are also caned if they were convicted of certain crimes. Their buttocks bleed and permanent scars are left behind.

It is a terrible state of affairs. The prison system is full of stupid unreasonable rules that just drives inmates crazy. The regime is very inhumane.

Someone should campaign for change. Oh wait, if someone were to campaign for change in the wrong manner, they could be fined or jailed for illegal assembly since even peaceful protests are illegal in Singapore. And you need a police permit to speak in public.

Compared to Singapore, prisons in the US are like heaven.

The prisons in countries like the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Netherlands and basically every other first world democracy are like 5 stars hotel.

For many crimes, the prison sentences in Singapore are also very much longer compared to other first world democracies. Serious drug trafficking can be a 6 year bid in Australia (3 years with parole, probably served in a minimum security prison) but in Singapore it can be the death penalty. There are no minimum security prisons in Singapore for criminal cases.

I also recall on the newspaper not too long ago, one guy got caught using a fake credit card and was jailed 4 years. The same offence for first time offenders in other first world democracies would normally be probation, fine or house arrest in other countries. Or a 1-2year jail bid for repeat offenders in a minimum security prison.

Adults in Singapore do not get probation except in special circumstances as probation is generally only available to minors. It is either fine or prison for adults. No suspended sentence, no house arrest, no probation(normally). There seems to be a lack of sentencing options.

Even in third world countries like Peru, the prisoners get to watch TV, listen to the radio and they can have their relatives bring them food, cloth for handicraft work, any amount of books they want. I have heard the inmates have even managed to set up a disco in one of their prisons!

Nelson Mandela once said something like this "You can judge a country by not how it treats its upper class but by how it treats its prisoners".

Everyone should email the Prison Service and the Ministry of Home Affairs to demand more humane treatment for the inmates.

Last edited by Rachel; 12-02-2009 at 12:07 AM.. Reason: member request re localised posting restrictions
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  #2  
Old 11-28-2009, 10:36 PM
Nice123_de Nice123_de is offline
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Sorry ... you ever been in Singapore, or asia? Singapore is a dictatorship! But ask for a jail with aircon or westernstyle beds IN ASIA is ...
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Old 11-30-2009, 10:03 AM
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Sorry ... you ever been in Singapore, or asia? Singapore is a dictatorship! But ask for a jail with aircon or westernstyle beds IN ASIA is ...
Get your facts right. Many countries in Asia do provide beds or proper mattresses for their inmates. Hong kong, Malaysia, Australia, Japan. Just to name a few.

In Hong Kong, a country which Singapore is often compared to, their inmates are able to watch tv, listen to the radio and read the newpapers.

No one is asking for air conditioners in prison cell. But fans should be allowed in Singapore's prison. You must understand that Singapore lies just above the equator, it is hot and humid all year round. Temperatures reach 30-40 degrees celcius in the cells. It is only humane that fans are provided.

In this forum, there are reports of Singapore inmates being able to attend the Kaki Bukit Prison School or Laselle art classes. The reality is only 200 out of 15000 or so inmates get to attend the prison school. Even when they get to attend prison school, they are often forced to finish what is originally a four year course, (the GCE O levels) in one year.

As of May 2009, only 10 inmates, out of 15000 or so, have the chance to take up the Laselle art classes. The classes only last a total of 45hours.

The bottom line is this, caning inmates, making them sleep on hard floors, locking them in their cells 23/24 hours a day, giving them access to only 3 softcover books each month with no other personal belongings, depriving them of basic leisure acitivites like tv and radio daily, setting unreasonable rules to stress and drive inmates up the wall, is just penal harm. No first world democracy, or any country for that matter, should do such things. It is inhumane.

In Singapore, when the inmates are sick and warded in the prison hospital, they are forced to sleep on hard metal beds. Their legs are chained to the bed frames at night and they are given a lantrine to defecate into should the need arise. It is disgusting to treat sick people like this.

There have been a lot of comments about how inhumane Fuchu in Japan is. Singapore is much worse than Fuchu. Imagine Fuchu without the beds, TV and personal items, pen and paper, and outdoor exercises. Imagine having to endure extremely hot weather all year round, sweating incessantly every minute of the day for the whole year. Just like in Fuchu, there are also the same unreasonable rules that drive inmates up the wall.

To illustrate how unreasonable they can get in Singapore, there is the example of newspapers. In Singapore the prisons censor the daily newspapers, any articles which they don't fancy are cut out.

In the end, you have inmates reading newspapers with lots of holes in them. Anyone who is reasonable will see that this is totally unecessary. The inmates also have to oblige with a long list of rules just like in Fuchu. Inmates have to greet the COs, squat down, keep their hands to their back when talking to the COs..and the list goes on.

Work in Singapore's prison is hard to come back as the number of inmates exceed the number of work opportunities. In the end, many inmates spend months and years staring at their cell walls 23 hours daily.

People want to see recalcitrant and violent offenders doing hard time. But first time, non violent offenders should be given much less harsh sentences and treatment than what is happening now in Singapore.

Like all other countries with basic human rights, a minimum security prison should be set up for these offenders. Inmates should have proper access to leisure, humane treatment, education and rehabilitation.

Singapore prison should really align itself with international standards on human rights and human decency. Years later, future generations will judge.

Will they say that Singapore is a forward and not backwards looking society? Will that say that in Singapore, there are human rights even for the inmates? Or will they shake their heads in disgust?

Edit: In my first post on this thread, I didn't mean to say drug traffickers in Australia are given 6 years in a minimum security prison. It was a typing mistake. I tried to edit it but I couldn't. I meant to say that drug trafficers are given 6-10 years. With good behavior, they can downgrade themselves to a medium or minimum security prison.

Last edited by barney11; 11-30-2009 at 10:30 AM..
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  #4  
Old 12-01-2009, 12:56 AM
Nice123_de Nice123_de is offline
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Don´t worry about my "facts", Barney

First of all, don´t compare Singapore with Japan and please don´t compare a country in Asia with Australia, which is definatly not an asian country.

Please keep in your mind that Singapore is not a democracy and keep in your mind that nearly no one in Sillipore cares about that!

Lets have a closer look at the people living and working in Singapore.
In everyday life its nothing special if the boss slaps his secretary for a mistake, she made. The indian shopkeeper thinks he is right when he kicks his "lazy" staff. And do you really think that all these foreign workers sleep in a bed? Even in a rich household its nothing special when the nanny sleeps on the floor.
You believe that a construktion worker in Singapore thinks its inhuman if a prisoner don´t have a fan!
You ask why the punishments are so harsh?! The keyword here is the old chinese philosophy: "legalism" - laws, rewards and harsh punishments. I am far away to say this philosophy is right. But people who grow up under the influence of chinese culture live with that 2500 year old philisophy.

Please keep in your mind that other cultures have other values.

And an advice for you and other people who read this. You can write to the ministry ... but keep in your mind that you write to a dictatorship.
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Old 12-01-2009, 09:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nice123_de View Post
Don´t worry about my "facts", Barney

First of all, don´t compare Singapore with Japan and please don´t compare a country in Asia with Australia, which is definatly not an asian country.

Please keep in your mind that Singapore is not a democracy and keep in your mind that nearly no one in Sillipore cares about that!

Lets have a closer look at the people living and working in Singapore.
In everyday life its nothing special if the boss slaps his secretary for a mistake, she made. The indian shopkeeper thinks he is right when he kicks his "lazy" staff. And do you really think that all these foreign workers sleep in a bed? Even in a rich household its nothing special when the nanny sleeps on the floor.
You believe that a construktion worker in Singapore thinks its inhuman if a prisoner don´t have a fan!
You ask why the punishments are so harsh?! The keyword here is the old chinese philosophy: "legalism" - laws, rewards and harsh punishments. I am far away to say this philosophy is right. But people who grow up under the influence of chinese culture live with that 2500 year old philisophy.

Please keep in your mind that other cultures have other values.

And an advice for you and other people who read this. You can write to the ministry ... but keep in your mind that you write to a dictatorship.
Firstly, Singapore's legal system has nothing Chinese about it, it is based on the English system of parliamentary sovereignity and common law.

Secondly, Singapore's population is multiracial, with caucasians, malays, indians and chinese.

Thirdly, nothing in Chinese culture suggests torture. To think otherwise is absurd.

It is very clear that you have zero idea of what you are talking about. The readers will be able to discern for themselves.

Hong Kong and Taiwan are two countries that are mostly Chinese. They both have humane treatment of their prisoners. In Taiwan, where wages are generally lower than Singapore, inmates have fans and beds in their cells. They are also able to enrol in real educational courses from the Taiwanese Open University. In fact, completing a degree in prison should be encouraged as part of rehabilitation. Many prisons in the US would give a reduction of sentence or parole to such inmates who have shown the desire to change, get educated and ARE PROVIDED WITH ALL THE TOOLS TO DO SO.

Last edited by barney11; 12-01-2009 at 09:49 AM..
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Old 12-01-2009, 03:18 PM
Nice123_de Nice123_de is offline
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Firstly, Singapore's legal system has nothing Chinese about it, it is based on the English system of parliamentary sovereignity and common law
So whats the probem then when the system is british ... the democrats rules and all must be fine?!

I wonder about your problem! On the one hand Sillypure has a system based on "english" system ... and that so bad?

I will make it easy fo you! What Sillypores people and their goverment decide about their internal affairs is just a question for the people in that country! Keep your western view on your country! And where ever you are from, you have enaught to look for!
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Old 12-02-2009, 05:40 AM
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Your inability to read and type in English is amusing

Last edited by barney11; 12-02-2009 at 06:01 AM..
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Old 12-03-2009, 08:59 AM
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Conditions of Singapore's prison:

Inmates are often kept in their cells 23 hours daily - inhumane

Inmates are forced to sleep on the hard floor - inhumane

Inmates convicted of minor crimes such as overstaying their work visa by 3 months or vandalism are caned by a thick wooden lash, resulting in blood and permanent scars - inhumane

Inmates are denied basic leisure activities daily such as watching tv and listening to radio - inhumane

Inmates are kept indoors for their entire sentence and are not allowed outdoors to exercise - inhumane

Inmates are not allowed zero personal possessions. Not even photographs of their families are allowed unless special permission is given. They only get 3 softcover books to read a month - inhumane

There are no fans in cells even though temperatures often reach 30-40 degrees celcius and humidity is extremely high. Inmates sweat profusely throughout the entire day - inhumane

Sick inmates in the prison hospital are forced to sleep on hard metal beds with their legs chained to the bed frame. they are given a lantrine to defacate into. - inhumane

Inmates who are suspected of having mental problems are placed in a cell where the lights are switched on for 24hours. This is deliberate sleep depravation. It only aggravates their problems further. The rationale for keeping the lights on is because the COs want to record their every move through the night. Even a monkey would know that you could use infra red night cameras for that! - inhumane

Inhumane inhumane inhumane.
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Old 12-15-2009, 06:04 PM
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Just a reminder that we don't allow personal attacks on PTO.
Also, it is possible to comment and have an opinion on a country/regime other than the one you currently fall under.

The conditions and treatment in Singaporean and many other Asian prison systems is well documented.

It does not matter where a person is at the moment; we don't know each others' history, where we have been and what we have experienced.

Please treat each other with the respect that you, yourself, would expect to be shown.
I think you will find that we are all in agreement about the situation in Singapore; because there are places that are better or worse does not make it acceptable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nice123_de View Post
So whats the probem then when the system is british ... the democrats rules and all must be fine?!

I wonder about your problem! On the one hand Sillypure has a system based on "english" system ... and that so bad?

I will make it easy fo you! What Sillypores people and their goverment decide about their internal affairs is just a question for the people in that country! Keep your western view on your country! And where ever you are from, you have enaught to look for!
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Old 12-17-2009, 03:54 AM
Nice123_de Nice123_de is offline
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Rachel, I guess you and Barney are from western countries (I am also) and if you use the word “inhuman” you use it as it is defined in western tradition, based on christian religion, and western philosophy. But do you think other cultures have the same definition? Do you think we can force them to accept our definitions?
Let me give you an example: some years ago I was sitting with a friend in a nice location near the Mekong. This girl is teacher, she is a very religious woman, who visit the tempel every day, sometimes twice. She cares for her parents and also for some homeless children. So we sitting there and have a drink, when we heared two shoots. Some minutes later a police pick-up drove down the street and we could see two dead bodies on the loading space. It was during the time, when this country declared “war against drugs” and a lot of drug suspected lost their life in the streets. In other words they where executed by the police. I was shocked, but noticed no reaction from the girl. I asked her about that and she said: “Why do you worry, they been criminals, they killed people and made children drug addicted. All here in the village will be happy that they are dead!”
Is she “inhuman”? Does she have no feeling for “justice”? Do you think it would have been my part to teach her how to behave political correct in our “western-style”.
Please don´t think the definitions of inhuman, right and wrong, cruel are common sense all over the world.

@Barney
Do you think someone who calls Australia an asian country is really in the position to laugh about someones language skills?
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Old 12-17-2009, 07:54 PM
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Dear Nice123,

I just wanted to remind you (both) that we treat each others' opinions and experiences with respect here on PTO.
For your information, I have lived all over Asia for the past 6 years and witnessed more acts of kindness and compassion in that short time then I did in the earlier parts of my life in the West.
I have no criticism of different cultures or thinking, what I do object to is a prison regime that degrades, abuses and tortures its incarcerated people. This is not an Asian phenomenon, it goes on all over the world and I will object to it wherever I hear about it.

We share a common humanity and we should always remember that. We are all born naked and we all die alone. What we do in-between is what separates us from each other. It is not what we take out of life that matters but what we freely give.
Compassion is the key to living a good life, in my opinion.

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Old 12-18-2009, 02:21 AM
Nice123_de Nice123_de is offline
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Dear Rachel, thank you for reprimand me! You really believe what you are writing? Every opinion is respected? I don´t think so. The opinion which is political correct in western sense is respected here. Just a small reminder that different cultures have different values is not welcome.


You show that in not having a clear and direct comment to Barneys juvenile mockery against me.


Its better for me to leave this place and let the members here act like the colonial rulers of older times.


Living in asia for six years is a very short time, I am sure you will have some more years there and learn.
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Old 12-18-2009, 03:13 AM
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Nice123 I spend every day learning more and more about the human condition.

I am sorry that you feel that way, your perspective is yours to cherish.
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Old 12-30-2009, 12:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Nice123_de View Post
Dear Rachel, thank you for reprimand me! You really believe what you are writing? Every opinion is respected? I don´t think so. The opinion which is political correct in western sense is respected here. Just a small reminder that different cultures have different values is not welcome.


You show that in not having a clear and direct comment to Barneys juvenile mockery against me.


Its better for me to leave this place and let the members here act like the colonial rulers of older times.


Living in asia for six years is a very short time, I am sure you will have some more years there and learn.
Nice123, how many years have you lived in asia then? do you speak any asian languages? For you information, australia is part of asia pacific, it's so near asia that calling it a country in asia wouldn't be a travesty. the technical term is asia pacific but its nearest neighbours all all asian countries.

I have lived in asia for almost 30 years. I have 3 citizenships, 2 in asia, 1 in europe. 2 of my citizenships were obtained from birth in asia, 1 was earned. I also speak asian languages to varying degree. The irony is you, a german living in western europe, is telling rachel and i, both who have lived in asia extensively, what asian culture is.

I would welcome your views or even discourse, if they were at least reasonable or made sense. The only one who seems to think like a colonial ruler is you with your appalling views on asians.

you seem to say that asian culture accords prisoners less rights, therefore, it is acceptable to torture them. western culture accords prisoners more rights, there, it is unacceptable to torture them in anyway.

that notion is preposterous.

one of the country i have citizenship in, and the palce where i was born (technically it is not a citizenship but residence or right of abode) is hong kong. if you have visited hong kong, you will see there is a feirce emphasis on human rights and democracy in their prisons and society. the hk legco is very feirce on democracy and human rights.

the same goes for taiwan, south korea and even, to a more subdued extent, japan.

every western nation has had a culture of human right abuses before. even germany. germany has had the berlin wall standing for 30 years. in the past, german inmates were treated very poorly. in fact, they were even gassed, malnutritioned and tortured during the 1950s. germany has progressed from a nazi , dictatorship under hitler to a functioning democracy today, where inmates are treated very decently. germany was run by the nazis just 60 years ago! 1940-50s! the berlin wall just fell 20 years ago!

the british have had the death penalty for a long time, they used torture machines to break the limbs of their inmates and used to cane them too. british inmates in the past also had a terrible enviroment. caning and the death penalty carried on till the 1970 if i recall correctly. the british were under a dictator (the monach) for much of their history. but they now have a democracy, and their inmates are treated decently.

as you can see, society should progresses and culture changes. it is wrong to say that it is german, asian, or british culture, therefore, nothing should be changed, inmates should be tortured, dictatorship should continue, human rights abuse shoudl be continue.

going by your analogy, should germany continue under a dictatorship, continue to be nazi run, continue to gas her own inmates as undeniably, that was part of german culture?

should britain continue to hang, cane, use torture devices on her inmates as undeniably that is a very long standing part of british culture?

no they should not. that was part of their history, and every successful country has had a un unglamorous history in the past. but they have progressed. they do not choose to be like you nice123 and say, it is part of our culture!

china has chosen to think the way you think nice123, "it is part of our culture", that is why it is the way it is today, even when its chinese counterparts in taiwan and hongkong and macau have progressed to relatively high levels of human rights, even when compared to europe and north america.

singapore also has chose to think the way you do nice123. the singapore government continues to say asian values dictate that it should hand out very harsh penal punishments, that liberal democracy is not suitable for singapore, hence the use of many laws to stifle democracy, such as the need for police permits for assembly of more than 5 person and for making speeches in public.

we are waiting for singapore penal system to progress.

i have just visited the singapore prison website and they make it sound so good but it is so far from the reality.

one picture even shows a prisoner watering flowers in the open air. in reality, the inmates at changi prison will never get to water flowers in the open air, they are locked up indoors for the entire duration of their sentence! they dont get to go outdoors at all! unless they have hearings in court or need to go to the hopistal for emergencies!

it spells out the rehabilitaion process so nicely! in reality, you are basically locked up 23 hours in an overcrowded cell! with no daily access to tv or radio! with only 3 books! no beds , only hard floors to sleep on! work if you are lucky to get any is mind numbing and often imparts no real skill, like laundry work. you take out the clothes, put them back in, and repeat that for 8 hours daily.

there is no prison canteen where you can buy extra food or meat like in most prisons overseas.

there are no recreation facilities like gyms or football fields. the only "recreation" inmates get daily is 1 hour in an indoor basket ball court.

the prison service boasts of lots of reacreational activities but it is all BS. even when inmates play games, they cannot even choose their own team members, the COs choose it for them. there are just so many rules, like the japanese prison, to stifle the inmates basic rights to even choose their own team members for games. you have to greet COs, hands behind your back, heads shoven, squat when ordered to, like a robot really.

inmates sometimes get to read newspapers in prison. but the newspapers are full of holes because the COs have "censored" the newspapers. newspapers in singapore are the mildest you can get as they are state controlled, why do you need to cut holes into them?

visits are short and the inmate and his visitor are seperated by a glass. visits occur once a fortnight.

you can only write one letter every fornight! even when writing your letter, you are not allowed to make mistakes or cancel words.

the entire system is filled with unreasonable rules designed to drive the singaporean inmate up the wall.

inmates are not even allowed to keep pictures from their family unless they are given the permission to!

and inmates do go crazy, quite often. nick lesson in his book described his prison experience in singapore. go read it. he noted that quite a few inmates were driven nuts by the harsh regime and cracked their skulls against the wall. they were then chained to metal beds and injected with antipyschotic which sometimes leave them with "fits" or dyskinesia.

if antipyschotics are injected in large enough amounts or frequently enough, dyskinesia can be permanent and life long, rendering the suffering to be branded a "weirdo" in normal society. imagine your face involuntarily contorted, eyes staring upwards like a madman, that is what these "fits" are about.

here is a video showing the reality of singapore prison, produced by the government themselves. the word harsh cannot even adequately describe it, inhumane would be better a word (w ww.ncpc.gov.sg/video_prisonme.htm) the video shows an inmate exercising in an outdoor yard but these days in the newly renovated changi prison, there are no outdoor yards anymore, it is all indoor. the video also shows a teen prison, which is supposed to be the milder version of an adult one.

the nice prison website potray such a nice image, they speak of humane treatment like it was really the case. the high rise buildings in singapore leads one to think that the prisons in singapore cant be that bad. but that is far from the truth. the prison system in singapore is just overly harsh and inhumane. the system is third world. change is long overdue but sadly, singapore continues to be adverse to change

Last edited by barney11; 12-30-2009 at 12:58 PM..
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Old 12-30-2009, 12:53 PM
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i was rather tired and sleepy while typing the above post, so please pardon any mistakes made, i am sure there were quite a few

and rachel, may i suggest you change your faq on singapore prison in this forum for the faq is a joke really, it is all lifted from the website and is very far from the truth as you can tell.

Last edited by barney11; 12-30-2009 at 01:10 PM..
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Old 12-30-2009, 02:55 PM
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I have 3 citizenships, 2 in asia, 1 in europe. 2 of my citizenships were obtained from birth in asia, 1 was earned. I also speak asian languages to varying degree.
Wow ... are you Mr Taksin and you are on the run?

Sorry dear clown ... i am tired playing with you! Maybe you learn in next life!

Last edited by Nice123_de; 12-30-2009 at 03:00 PM..
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Old 12-30-2009, 08:52 PM
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I'm happy to change the FAQ's but need some more info if we are going to update them.
Please let me know where to source this.

Otherwise, I would appreciate it if personal comments were not made by any member from this point forward.

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Old 12-31-2009, 12:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Nice123_de View Post
Wow ... are you Mr Taksin and you are on the run?

Sorry dear clown ... i am tired playing with you! Maybe you learn in next life!
Plenty of people around the world are born with two citizenships from their parents...technically i have 2 citizenships in all as hong kong is not a country, therefore, there is no citizenships in hong kong for non chinese citizenships, only a resident card called right of abode.

And rachel, you can use the information in this thread for the faq.

the video is at: w ww.ncpc.gov.sg/video_prisonme.htm

the cell basically has nothing much inside. it is sad inmates live this kind of lives.

search on youtube for japan prisons and compare to the video. singapore has the same unreasonable rules as in japan. but look at japanese prisons, they are so much better physically, and they are getting sued all over the place by inmates.

the only good thing about singapore prison is medical care is available. food is also livable, but i doubt it would strictly meet all the daily RDA standards, especially of protein. this is only so that inmates wont die and the prisons will get sued and it becomes international news.

they will try every way to erode your dignity and mentally torture you in singapore prison.
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Old 03-07-2010, 12:46 PM
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Don´t worry about my "facts", Barney

First of all, don´t compare Singapore with Japan and please don´t compare a country in Asia with Australia, which is definatly not an asian country.

Please keep in your mind that Singapore is not a democracy and keep in your mind that nearly no one in Sillipore cares about that!

Lets have a closer look at the people living and working in Singapore.
In everyday life its nothing special if the boss slaps his secretary for a mistake, she made. The indian shopkeeper thinks he is right when he kicks his "lazy" staff. And do you really think that all these foreign workers sleep in a bed? Even in a rich household its nothing special when the nanny sleeps on the floor.
You believe that a construktion worker in Singapore thinks its inhuman if a prisoner don´t have a fan!
You ask why the punishments are so harsh?! The keyword here is the old chinese philosophy: "legalism" - laws, rewards and harsh punishments. I am far away to say this philosophy is right. But people who grow up under the influence of chinese culture live with that 2500 year old philisophy.

Please keep in your mind that other cultures have other values.

And an advice for you and other people who read this. You can write to the ministry ... but keep in your mind that you write to a dictatorship.
I was just looking through this post by "Nice" (oh irony) again and I just cannot help but feel how misguided this person is. Her view of Singapore is so warped it is amazing. I doubt she has ever set foot in Singapore before.

Maybe she thinks Singapore is a third world slum of some sort. But Singapore is not. Singapore's gdp per capita (nominal) is around 20th in the world and just about the same as the UK and Japan.

Singapore's gdp per capita (PPP) is top 5 in the world. Meaning, in real terms, after taking into account cost of living, Singaporeans are the top 5 richest people on this planet. Maybe it would shock her to find out that Singaporeans are richer than the British, Italians, Germans, Portugese etc. Singapore ranks 18 on the most liveable city list. It is just a shame that the prisons are so harsh and inhumane.

"Nice" does not know that every 1 out of 4 person in Singapore is not Chinese by race. And that Singapore is a secular Country which has zero ties to China. The culture in Singapore is definitely not Chinese, it is Singaporean.

She then goes on to talk about how Singaporeans grow up under Chinese culture and under a Chinese legal system.

She does not realise that Singaporeans are educated in English and it is common to find Chinese Singaporeans who cannot even speak Chinese. Many of those Chinese Singaporeans cannot even read and write in Chinese. The main language in Singapore is English.

Singaporean culture is a mix of East and West, There are some elements of Chinese culture in the Chinese Singaporean community but Singaporeans definitely do not grow up in a “Chinese” culture more than in a “British” culture or “American” culture. In fact, Singaporean culture is probably a whole lot more “Western” than “Eastern”.

I doubt the average Singaporean Chinese knows who Confucius is. But they definitely do know what Macdonalds and Celine Dion is.

And the legal system has nothing "Chinese" about it. In fact, you will find entirely nothing in Singapore's legal system that has to do with Chinese culture, Chinese or anything of that sort. God knows how "Nice" came up with that.

If she had said "Indian and British" I might still have accepted it as the legal system in Singapore was inherited from British common law; and many Singaporean laws were drafted after consulting Indian and Commonwealth laws.

In fact, many Singaporeans are speaking up against the harsh prison conditions these days.

"Nice" really has no idea what she is talking about.

Someone should tell "Nice" that Singaporean bosses do not slap their secretaries in Singapore; because surely, the boss will be fined or jailed. And the shopkeepers do not kick their employees as well, that is just ridiculous. It is just as ridiculous as saying the earth is flat. And I seriously doubt any nannies in Singapore sleep on the floor. A cheap china made foam matress in Singapore probably costs 20 or 30 bucks. If any nanny is sleeping on the floor without bedding, it is definitely because she wants to not because she cannot afford a mattress.

And by the way, the nannies and construction workers are very rarely Singaporeans. Most of them are foreigners. Construction workers all over the world, including in the USA etc, all live in poor conditions compared to the general populace. Even so, construction workers do have beddings and fans and TV etc in Singapore.

I doubt "Nice" knows much about Singapore or Asia or Chinese or Indian or any culture outside her own to be honest.

There are plenty of homeless people in her country as well. Does she want all inmates in her country to sleep on hard floor, not be able to bathe, and have insufficient food to eat? Just like the homeless? Or live like the janitors?

Given her level of English, "Nice" would not be able to read any Singaporean website anyway. I am not going to waste my time responding to "Nice" or anyone like her because it is plain obvious what a waste of time it is to respond to someone like "Nice" who doesn't really know anything.

Last edited by barney11; 03-07-2010 at 01:09 PM..
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Old 04-04-2010, 12:34 AM
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As I was scrolling down the threads my eye caught sight of this thread title. It is dreadful the conditions over there and like Barney says one can do very little about it because the censorship to battle is near impossible.
This is the country that also voted to not give maids the right to one day off a week, too problematic for them to cope
I believe 100% the conditions are vile, because I have had first hand experience of talking to the Police over there and the hassle in just giving a statement that was recorded ACCURATELY Dropped the case in the end, as I was very unhappy with the way things were going.


They did however, a give a prisoner a 2nd chance campaign some years ago and that is what got me into writing penpals I saw a subtitled interview of a little old lady and her inmate she wrote to. As my Chinese was basically zero and I knew most inmates didn't understand English I looked to the US for penpals. Amnesty International is open in their opinions of how they treat criminals. However, I would disagree that prisoners in other parts of the world are treated much better. The US I have learnt, prison is a business for making money Prison should NOT be a money making business! Rehabilition is often the last thing they work towards
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Old 04-04-2010, 12:39 AM
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And I seriously doubt any nannies in Singapore sleep on the floor. A cheap china made foam matress in Singapore probably costs 20 or 30 bucks. If any nanny is sleeping on the floor without bedding, it is definitely because she wants to not because she cannot afford a mattress.
Maid abuse... I can talk about this for hours unfortunately 'Nannies' on the floor, it did happen. Again maid abuse, something spoken about as unacceptable BUT not a rare occurance. I worked alongside maids and lost count of the times I had to say, you were not stupid etc, thank goodness you were able to move on from previous employment.
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Old 06-25-2011, 07:40 AM
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I've found more information when I nosed about a bit more. Can't post links until I have 25 posts but foudn it and will quote as much I recall off the top of my head

Rachel - if you have questions about Singapore tghat need to go into the FAQ, PM me and I'll do the best I can to answer them. I read this forum and I've been looking into it nonstop

Barney I agree they treat their inmates awfully. A strict routine has been proved scientifically that it DOESN'T help rehbailitate. The threat of hanging would deter me, as would the caning, but how is an inmate supposed to rehabilitate? Harsh treatment will only serve to make them more hard bitten and disparaging towards society. Prison may rehabilitate someone, but the conditions don't make any difference. A person rehabilitates because he WANTS to, not because the guards are too hard or soft with them. It's a conscious choice each inmate makes. If he wants to 'mend', he will, no matter what.

Singapore truly believes that this regime is great. I'd say the loss of liberty is punishment enough (their sentences are long)

The way they treat sick people is shocking. According to an article I read, they even chained up a sick man's hand as well as their legs. A lot of them 'messed' tehmselves because they were unable to easily manouvre the pot they've given

They cut women's hair off ear length and men's heads are shaved indefinitely.

They say that they have 'experimented with beds, but most inmates still slept on one the floor because it's cooler'

Really? Personally, I find that hard to swallow. I think if I was that hot, I'd take the mattress off the bed, put the straw mat on, and then sleep on it. I cannot for the lfie of me imagine why someoen woudl sleep on the floor when they've got a bed

Death row inmates aren't even allowed blankets and are not allowed to hug their loived ones before they are hung

A detainee witnessed guards stripping an inmate and forcing her to kneel down in front of lots of people

And all this....on top of what Barney said (which appears to be true, I've seen many statements about it and it's amazing how they all tally). I'm not one for bringing up old threads but anyway it's sliced Barney is right. Singapore treat their inmates in a beastly manner, and they ought to be ashamed

-----------

One time, a prison guard led me to a corridor and tried to force me to eat under the monitoring device. The guard shouted, "Today if you do not eat, you will not be allowed to return to your cell." I told her, "Before I practised Falun Gong, I was unhealthy. For two years, I persisted in reading Zhuan Falun and doing the exercises, which turned me into a healthy person. Reading and practise is an essential part of my life. Please give me the book." The guard went back to her supervisor. They still decided to not give me the book, so I continued the hunger strike.
While incarcerated, penalties against criminals are severe. Every day I heard guards shouting at people. I saw a guard force one inmate to take off all her clothes and humiliated her by forcing her to stand, and then kneel in front of a number of people. In order to strictly control criminals, they developed some cruel and unusual punishments; for instance they would force the detainees to stand in a fixed position. If they moved, the person would be severely punished. The jail rationed water to its inmates. During my last eight days in jail, I was put in a cell with two others and our water allotment was grossly insufficient. We had no choice but to take the water from the toilet.
------- My 28 Days In A Singapore Jail - Clearharmony.com

Wouldn't let my dog drink from the toilet. Shocking

As I said, if anyone wnats any more info, PM me, I'm happy to help

Last edited by felicity2011; 06-25-2011 at 07:54 AM..
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Old 08-12-2011, 10:34 PM
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nice..
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Old 08-12-2011, 10:51 PM
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Originally Posted by barney11 View Post
Plenty of people around the world are born with two citizenships from their parents...technically i have 2 citizenships in all as hong kong is not a country, therefore, there is no citizenships in hong kong for non chinese citizenships, only a resident card called right of abode.

And rachel, you can use the information in this thread for the faq.

the video is at: w ww.ncpc.gov.sg/video_prisonme.htm

the cell basically has nothing much inside. it is sad inmates live this kind of lives.

search on youtube for japan prisons and compare to the video. singapore has the same unreasonable rules as in japan. but look at japanese prisons, they are so much better physically, and they are getting sued all over the place by inmates.

the only good thing about singapore prison is medical care is available. food is also livable, but i doubt it would strictly meet all the daily RDA standards, especially of protein. this is only so that inmates wont die and the prisons will get sued and it becomes international news.

they will try every way to erode your dignity and mentally torture you in singapore prison.
All I can say is that inmates are there to serve their sentences due to their crimes and they are not going in for a holiday. Don't expect more and take things for granted. If someone are brave enough to commit a crime, they shall be brave enough to undergo these mental torture period. Thats why a prison exist.
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Old 08-14-2011, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by felicity2011 View Post
Barney I agree they treat their inmates awfully. A strict routine has been proved scientifically that it DOESN'T help rehbailitate. The threat of hanging would deter me, as would the caning, but how is an inmate supposed to rehabilitate? Harsh treatment will only serve to make them more hard bitten and disparaging towards society. Prison may rehabilitate someone, but the conditions don't make any difference. A person rehabilitates because he WANTS to, not because the guards are too hard or soft with them. It's a conscious choice each inmate makes. If he wants to 'mend', he will, no matter what.
The thing is, Singapore prison system was never meant to rehabilitate. This all started in the 60s all the way to the early 90s, where (gun)fights between SPF (Singapore Police Force) and gangs are not uncommon. Prison was not meant to rehabilitate these gang members, but to deter them from coming back again, and more importantly, strongly deter members of the public from taking their chances with the law. In fact, this has worked very well that gangs are now a joke and repeat offenders are much rarer compared to the US and many other western countries with human rights.

I have no idea how employment is like for ex-inmates, but in Singapore, as long as you have entered prison, you have a black mark for the rest of your life (or at least 15 years before it is removed). Singaporeans are legally supposed to declare whether they are an ex-inmate if asked by employers, until 15 years later if nothing happen. Still, for these 15 years, once the prospective employer finds out that you are an ex-innate, there's NO way you are going to get hired. Not even (or perhaps especially) for jobs like cashiers and cleaners, as the employer feel that they won't be able to trust the worker. An ex-shoplifter may still the money from the cash register, an ex-pickpocket may just ransack your office while you're away, and who knows what an ex-gang member may do to you once he is in the workplace. Bottom line: It's not worth it to hire an ex-offender, better to hire a foreign worker anyway.

Anyway, a large percentage of the population thinks the prison system in Singapore is good. Opposite of Westerners, we are repulsed when we look at "5-star prisons" in the US and other countries. Some prisons have beds, 24-hour air-conditioners, and a PS3 to boot. To us, that's not jail-time, it's a holiday! Heck, the prisoners' lives are probably better than what some of us Singaporeans have to deal with. Who would care about going to jail again if prisons are so great?

Finally, one reason why many Singaporeans don't care and support the prison system (including caning) is because it wouldn't affect them. As long as you are a good law-abiding citizen (which you are SUPPOSED to be. Nobody is expected to break laws in the first place), you shouldn't have to worry about how prison life is like. Even if every crime, even petty ones like shoplifting, have a mandatory capital punishment, it only affects the bad guys. The world would be a better place without them.
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