(December 20, 2018 / JNS) Women’s and children’s rights organizations expressed outrage on Thursday morning after 970 convicts, including domestic abusers and sex offenders, were released early from prison due to overcrowding.
The release came following a ruling by the High Court of Justice last year that all prisoners must now be afforded more square feet of space per person than previously, leading to an immediate overcrowding problem.
The amount of time cut off the sentences of the 247 domestic abusers, 49 sex criminals and other convicts was not publicized.
“The decision may have far-reaching consequences for minors,” the Israel National Council for the Child said in a letter to the head of the Israel Prisons Service prior to the release. The letter also criticized the government for failing to issue mandatory monitoring orders for the sex offenders, even though some of them are “considered dangerous.”
The Israel Women’s Network decried the early releases as “shocking and outrageous.”
“The release of hundreds of men, without specialized and comprehensive treatment plans, will put many more women in a dangerous situation, even at concern for their lives,” Ynet reported the Israel Women’s Network group as saying. “This is a slap in our face.”
A movement against the release is calling on women across Israel to strike for 25 minutes at 10 a.m. every day until the government approves a $66 million budget to target violence against women, which has been stalled.