Prisons in a Democratic South Africa - a Guide to the Rights of Prisoners as Described in the Correctional Services Act and Regulations

The Correctional Services Act (CSA) was promulgated in 2004 creating a human rights based framework for South Africa's prison system. In a sense the prison system was delayed in its transformation compared to other government functions in the justice and protection services cluster. Whilst the CSA was passed by Parliament in 1998 it was only in part promulgated and the final and full promulgation took place in October 2005, nearly seven years later. With a new legislative framework in place, the following questions can then rightly be asked: What does a constitutional democracy mean for prisoners? How are the rights of prisoners described in the new Act? What are the rights of children, women, and Aids patients in prisons? How does overcrowding affect prisoners' rights? The purpose of this resource book is to describe in an accessible and user-friendly format the human rights framework for prisoners in South Africa based on the Constitution, Correctional Services Act and the Regulations accompanying the legislation. Where appropriate, reference is made to other legislation that has a direct bearing on the rights of prisoners. It is not a legal text and it is not aimed at lawyers and persons studying prison law, although they may find it useful as a first introduction to a particular topic.
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