Young inmates need support
CORRECTIONAL Services Minister Sibusiso Ndebele yesterday called on mothers to lend support to the more than 53000 young inmates in prisons across the country.
"We call on mothers in particular to help us focus on the many young inmates who happen to be young black men," he said in a statement marking the end of Women's Month.
Ndebele said crime was the result of failures in the societies children grew up in.
"The fact that these children, as young as 17, have committed serious crimes should make society question where we have failed in protecting them from a life of crime.
"The average offender is a young substance abuser who has dropped out of school, is functionally illiterate and, more often, homeless. For most of them the only family they know are the other prisoners and the only parents they know are the system of corrections."