Press release

Experts on Pretrial Detention Gather in Mexico

Date
June 21, 2006
Contact
Office of Communications
media@opensocietyfoundations.org
+1 212-548-0378

MONTERREY, Mexico—The Open Society Justice Initiative is hosting "Lasting Change in Pretrial Detention: Recent Experiences in a Global Context," a two day workshop that brings together criminal justice practitioners and researchers from eight countries to compare strategies and lessons learned from their efforts to reform pretrial detention practices.

The workshop, which begins today, will allow the invited experts from Chile, India, Malawi, Mexico, Nigeria, Russia, South Africa, and the United States to share common experiences and discuss and refine the findings from their research on pretrial detention reform. The workshops will culminate in a Justice Initiative report, to be published later this year, that seeks to deepen global understanding of the problems presented by pretrial detention and the potential solutions that exist. The publication will reflect the Justice Initiative's work in broadening the repertoire of international advice and assistance that is available to governments and nongovernmental organizations interested in reforming pretrial detention practices.

On June 23, the international experts will join their Mexican colleagues in a working meeting entitled "Pretrial Detention and Oral Trial Reforms: Successful Strategies." The meeting, co-hosted by the Justice Initiative and its Monterrey-based partner, Renace, will provide Mexican criminal justice reform practitioners with the opportunity to exchange ideas with their international counterparts and discuss strategies for ensuring successful pretrial detention reform in Mexico. Senior officials and policy makers from the Mexican states of Chihuahua, Jalisco, Nuevo León, Oaxaca, and Tamaulipas are participating in the meeting and will share their vision for pretrial detention reform in their state. A growing number of Mexican states are in the process of reforming their criminal procedure codes to include oral adversarial trials and more modern pretrial detention practices in line with international standards.

These pretrial detention events are part of a larger Justice Initiative project to develop and share new knowledge about the reform of pretrial detention. The Justice Initiative helps those working in the pretrial detention reform field to better understand and measure the impact of their efforts.

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