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“Italian lawmakers responded with more alternative measures for minor crimes. In 2014, Italy also repealed harsh drug sentencing laws enacted during the 1990s, similar to the ‘three strikes’ laws in the United States. In 2014, Italy began releasing 10,000 inmates (of roughly 60,000) who had been convicted of minor offenses.
“But the issue of how best to rehabilitate offenders — and lower the recidivism rate — remained difficult. Italy has long allowed inmates in medium-security prisons to move around the facilities during the day.
“’The main problem has been that they do little during the day, which doesn’t help them at the present, nor for their future outside prisons,’ said Alessio Scandurra, who works for Antigone, a nonprofit group focused on the rights of detainees.”