EuroPris Special Edition Newsletter
on Foreign Nationals in Prison and Probation
Words from the FNPP Coordinator
For several years, the joint EuroPris / CEP Expert Group on Foreign Nationals in Prison and Probation, has been active in creating awareness and sharing knowledge and practices around the management of this group of offenders. Next to the Expert Group meetings, every two years a workshop has been organized to keep stakeholders updated on recent policy and operational initiatives and research. To keep up with the many developments across Europe in between Workshops, the Expert Group has also produced a dedicated newsletter. It is my pleasure to present you here with the second of our Special Edition Foreign Nationals in Prison and Probation Newsletter.

Nick Hammond
E-Learning Module on Managing Foreign National Prisoners available now!
Working with foreign prisoners is an increasing challenge for European prisons. To assist prison staff, managers, prison trainers and others who work with and are responsible for foreign prisoners, an innovative and engaging on-line E-Learning course has been created by EuroPris in conjunction with the Council of Europe HELP Programme and the University of Nottingham.

Featured Article 1:
Participation opportunities for foreign national prisoners in Belgium
Dorien Brosens
In Belgium, almost 44% of the prison population have a non-Belgian nationality. The limited research that is conducted about foreign national prisoners mainly focuses on the problems they experience during incarceration, while research only scantly focuses on foreign national prisoners’ opportunities to participate in prison activities. To investigate which prison activities are available for and accessible by foreign national prisoners, interviews have been conducted with the activity coordinators of all prisons in Flanders and Brussels.

Featured Article 2:
Education behind foreign prison bars (EABT) successful for 15 years
Frans Lemmers
EABT organises remote education for Dutch prisoners abroad since it was founded in 2004. Researchers from the Free University of Brussels (VUB) conduct since 2018 an evaluation study and the first results have recently been announced. The study consists of two parts: a quantitative study focused on student prisoners, and a qualitative study into the experiences of professionals and volunteers who support the EABT activities. If you are interested in the working method and experiences of EABT, please contact

Other News
Project - The Foreign National Resettlement
  Graham Quinn
The Foreign National Resettlement project is a new initiative based at HMP Huntercombe in the UK. The project was commissioned by the Prison Group Director of the Immigration Removal Centre & Foreign National Prisons Group (IRC & FNP) and is due to run until April 2020. The aim of the project is to explore resettlement opportunities for prisoners being deported overseas and review current resettlement activity to see if it can be developed further. The project wants to look at all resettlement needs but specifically: accommodation; education/training and employment; re-establishing and maintaining family ties; mental and physical health provision and drug and alcohol support schemes.  

Brits in prison in Europe – a recent snapshot
Pauline Crowe
Writing this the day after our Supreme Court has underlined the rule of law in the UK and we remain
in a situation of confusion as to our future relationship with Europe, focusing on British citizens in
prison there reveals what is for the majority of my countrymen, a completely unknown part of our
interaction with Europe. Despite prison systems across the world doing their best to reduce their prisoner populations, we don’t see any particular signs that numbers will reduce markedly in Europe. We see no reduction in demand for the services Prisoners Abroad provides. The continued uncertainty over our relationship with Europe means we also have no clarity over the potential impact of Brexit on British citizens imprisoned abroad.

PrisonWatch - The Human Connection
The mission of PrisonWatch is to make a human connection with those detained abroad and to create awareness about their situation. In 2019 PrisonWatch started in the penitentiary institution of Alphen aan den Rijn a ‘Foreign National Prisoners’-project. Newcomers with a foreign background and who are unable to speak Dutch or English can, if they wish, receive support from a PrisonWatch-host. The host is a fellow-prisoner that speaks their language and who can help to get adjusted into prison life and to become informed about procedures and rules. There is furthermore a network of trained network of PrisionWatch-volunteers that visit, upon request, their countrymen in prison.

Italian Prisoners Abroad - Project update
Luisa Ravagnani and Nicoletta Policek
Italian Prisoners Abroad (IPA), established in October 2013, is a unique NGO in Italy, providing valuable support for Italians facing detention abroad and for their families at home. With over 2,100 Italians currently imprisoned abroad, the IPA could provide more resettlement services and support for these vulnerable groups with additional financial resources in 2020.

Study on knowledge of staff working in Foreign National Prison Kongsvinger
Kristin Opaas Haugli
Since 2013, Kongsvinger prison has been the only Foreign National Prison in Norway, so far one in four in Europe. Experience shows that there are huge challenges regarding communication with the inmates due to many different languages and culture differences. Methods and solutions are not documented but are lived by the employees in everyday work with the inmates. Kongsvinger prison has initiated a study with objectives such as: “What is the tacit dimension in working with foreign nationals only? How is tacit knowledge expressed, how do employees share their knowledge, and in what arenas?”

Italian Project to improve access to community sentences for foreign national offenders
Vincenzo Lo Cascio with thanks to Alessandra Viviano
Access to community sanctions and measures (CSMs) is overall lower for foreigners than for nationals of the State of detention.   This fact and the high percentages of foreign nationals in detention, worsen the situation of prisons and significantly reduce the re-socialization effect that is pursued through the progressive access to CSMs as a last part of serving a custodial sentence. This article summarizes the Italian project, "I Redeem Myself For", which aims to provide equal access opportunities to both Italian and foreigner nationals in prison.

Home front meetings at the International Office of the Dutch Probation Service
Bureau Buitenland, the International Office of the Dutch Probation Service, supports family and friends of Dutch prisoners abroad. For instance, by organising quarterly meetings for them in Utrecht. Travel expenses are reimbursed, and lunch is included. The idea for such meetings was inspired by Prisoners Abroad, who organize such meetings for a long time. During these meetings the regional co-ordinators of Bureau Buitenland offer information and advice. Also, speakers of several relevant organisations are invited. But more importantly, the family of the prisoners get the opportunity to meet their peers and exchange experiences. Read about the personal experience of Manon, mother of a young offender imprisoned abroad.

European Organisation of Prison and Correctional Services (EUROPRIS)
P.O. Box 13635
2501 EP The Hague