His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn Phra Vajiraklaochaoyuhua donated 128 million baht from his personal funds. The donation is to support the second phase of the Department of Corrections’ project to improve medical services for prison inmates. 19 prisons nationwide will receive the donations. The project is titled “Doing Good Deeds for the Nation, the Religion and the Monarchy”.
Aim of Prison Project is to improve inmate health
According to the Department of Corrections, the project was initiated by His Majesty the King and Her Majesty the Queen. They both realize that physical and mental health is important to the people’s quality of life, with no exception for inmates.
Both the King and Queen want to see inmates receive access to health services equal to those received by the general public outside prisons. It is, therefore, important that health services at prisons firstly continuously improved. Secondly, the increase in health care knowledge increases among inmates.
The first phase of the project began on 28 December 2019. His Majesty the King contributed 217 million baht to the project. The initial funds went to the purchase of 756 items of medical equipment and hardware for 25 prisons. The funds for the second phases will go to the purchase of medical equipment for 19 prisons and their service hospitals. The charity project will continue with further phases to accommodate the rest of the prisons in Thailand.
Inmate Numbers in Thailand
According to the Department of Corrections, there are a total of 143 prisons in Thailand. The total incarceration population is more than 325,000. 13.3% of the prison population are female, making it the highest in the world. There are 4500 transexuals in prison. These transexuals are generally housed in male prisons. According to the Department of Corrections, they have separate sleeping quarters.
Complaints of prison overcrowding are the norm. According to a study by World Prison Brief (NGO on global incarceration), the prison density in Thailand is 145%. Above all, Thailand prisons lack many basic amenities and there is significant room for improvements.
In conclusion, the donation by the King is a welcome relief to the prison population.
For more information regarding this project, visit the link here.