In france there are currently about 17800 prisoners

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In France there are currently about 17.800 prisoners working in prison (28% - they were 37% in 2000). About half of them (47,5%) work for the prison administration (or for private firms if the prison is privately run) and will carry out work related to the running of the prison, such as maintenance, work in the kitchen or food distribution within the prison. Prisoners might also get production jobs, which they will carry out in workshops or within their prison cells, from private companies (45,5%) or from the prison industrial service (7%). Approximately 5.300 job posts are available for 12.500 prisoners in the 34 Greek prisons. In Italy only about one prisoner in five works. In 2012 no more than 30% of Polish prisoners were given the opportunity to work (including paid and unpaid). In Latvia on 31 December 2011 only 1.224 sentenced prisoners (591 in the prison maintenance, 633 in work offered by enterprises/private employer) and 8 pre-trial detainees (7 in the prison maintenance, 1 for private employer) of a total of 6.561 prisoners were in some employment. In Portugal more than one-third of the inmate population live without any purposeful activity. A FEW NUMBERS TRAINING AND WORK OPPORTUNITIES
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European Prison Observatory Prison in Europe: overview and trends 29 In short, the right to work is non-existent because of the shortage of jobs available inside prisons, and a large proportion of the prison population remains without opportunity to gain the skills that could enhance the likelihood of obtaining gainful employment once released (Solomon et al., 2004). Nearly everywhere the quality of jobs is really far from having a useful nature. For what concerns work under the prison administration, in particular, it is unqualified work, even named domestic job (i.e. in Italy), and the majority of these jobs are in cleaning and maintenance of prison facilities. Jobs in prison are not always paid. In Poland all institutions provide limited opportunities to do volunteer and unpaid work for the benefit of the unit. Prisoners can dispense meals, work in the kitchen or help with cleaning. In Latvia, sentenced prisoners may be employed with or without remuneration. In Greece, instead of payment, cleaning and maintenance of prison facilities activities result in the reduction of the actual length of the sentence. Work opportunities outside prison are always possible in theory, but in reality this rarely happens. Also working inside prison for private companies is a sporadic possibility, except for the UK, where a growing number of private companies are doing business in prison. Some of them have been criticised for reducing their workforce while increasing the size of their prison contract. They pay prisoners very low wages, and may request overtime, with reports of some prisoners working up to 60 hours a week.
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