U.S. funded bakery gives skills to women in jail

The U.S. Embassy in San Salvador, through the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL), and the General Directorate of Criminal Centers inaugurated the bakery at the Women’s Preadaptation Center in Ilopango, which will benefits more than 2,000 inmates.

The ceremony was attended by U.S. Ambassador, Jean Elizabeth Manes, Minister of Justice and Public Security Mauricio Ramírez Landaverde; Public Defender, Sonia Elizabeth Cortez de Madriz, and the General Director of Criminal Centers, Elías Orlando Molina, among others.

Thirty-three women participated in the construction of the bakery including electrical welding, plumbing, and remodeling of floors.  The construction of this new facility and its equipment allows a large segment of the prison population to acquire permanent skills in cooking and baking that can be put into practice once they complete their sentence and assist them to reintegrate into society.

The facilities have an industrial oven, utensils and professional tools for the production of various bakery products. The project was built with a donation by INL that totaled $200,000.

U.S. Ambassador Jean Manes stated that Reinforcing security in El Salvador is a priority for the U.S. Government and must be addressed from different points. That is why our focus it’s not only on violence prevention but reintegration of people in jail, she added.

This year, 4,500 inmates have participated in the Penitentiary Management Model “Yo Cambio” (I can change) through different activities in health, education, art, culture, social work, sports and religion. Since its implementation, 13,351 inmates in 12 detention centers around El Salvador have been integrated into productive activities.