Written Replies to Parliamentary Questions

Written Reply to Parliamentary Questions on the Effectiveness of Reform Programmes for Individuals Caught in Cycle of Re-Offending by Mr Teo Chee Hean, Deputy Prime Minister, Coordinating Minister for National Security and Minister for Home Affairs

Published: 18 August 2015


Mr Christopher de Souza: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Home Affairs (a) what are the rehabilitative aspects of corrective training; and (b) how effective has it been in reforming individuals caught in a cycle of re-offending.


Mr Christopher de Souza: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Home Affairs how effective has preventive detention been in reducing the recidivism rate for released persons.




1. Repeat offenders can be sentenced to CT or PD upon conviction, if they have been previously convicted for offences punishable with imprisonment for 2 years or more. The focus of CT is to prevent crime and reform repeat offenders. Repeat offenders aged 18 years old or above, may be sentenced to CT for a period of between 5 to 14 years. Repeat offenders aged 30 years old or above, may be sentenced to PD, for a period of between 7 to 20 years. The longer sentence under PD is to incarcerate recalcitrant offenders for a substantial period of time to protect the public.


2. When serving their sentences, both CT and PD inmates go through rehabilitation and counselling programmes to deal with their offending behaviour and underlying criminal tendencies. They may also be selected to work in SCORE workshops where they receive vocational training to improve their employability upon release. Towards the end of their sentences, suitable CT and PD inmates may be considered for release on licence at either a Halfway House or their own homes with strict conditions. This is to facilitate their reintegration into society. Given the different profiles of CT and PD inmates, more CT inmates are released on licence.


3. The repeat offenders sentenced to CT and PD are typically assessed as more likely to re-offend compared to other repeat offenders. The CT and PD regimes are therefore designed to reduce re-offending and recidivism through a combination of longer sentences and rehabilitation programmes for the inmates. The average recidivism rate for CT and PD inmates released from 2008 to 2012 is comparable to that of other repeat offenders.  


4. The Singapore Prison Service is reviewing both regimes with a view to providing more structured supervision and aftercare support for CT and PD inmates upon their release from prison. This will help them reintegrate into society and prevent re-offending. However, even with more supervision and aftercare support, inmates must ultimately take personal responsibility not to re-offend upon release.


Prisons Management and Rehabilitation