The 25th Anniversary Seminar of the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for Non-custodial Measures (The Tokyo Rules)
From 7 to 9 September 2015, the United Nations Asia and Far East Institute for the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders (UNAFEI ) held a seminar in honour of the 25th anniversary of the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for Non-custodial Measures (the Tokyo Rules), which were adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1990. This seminar considered the status of the implementation of non-custodial measures throughout the world, identified current issues and challenges by reviewing the status of non-custodial measures in each member country, and confirmed the significance of further promotion of the Tokyo Rules. UNAFEI is proud of its involvement in formulating the first draft of the Tokyo Rules and has been promoting non-custodial measures applicable to the member states of the United Nations ever since.
The Tokyo Rules have been influencing criminal justice systems in the promotion of non-custodial measures as alternatives to imprisonment for the last 25 years. Underlying the adoption of the Tokyo Rules are the key issues of prison overcrowding, balancing human rights with criminal punishment, and developing the ideology of offender rehabilitation and reintegration. Considering the cost-effectiveness and efficiency of community-based treatment and effective measures to prevent recidivism, these measures should be applied more frequently in the future. In addition, non-custodial measures will mitigate prison overcrowding. Moreover, the application of non-custodial measures will pave the way for successful offender rehabilitation and reintegration.
Participants from all over the world joined the seminar, such as Mr. Sven Pfeiffer, Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Officer of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Dr. Matti Joutsen, the Director of the European Institute for Crime Prevention and Control, affiliated with the United Nations, Dr. Han-kyun Kim, the Director of the Center for International Cooperation in Criminal Justice of the Korean Institute of Criminology, Dr. Wu Zongxian, the Director of the Institute for Crime and Correction, College for Criminal Law Science of Beijing Normal University, Dr. Kittipong Kittayarak, the Executive Director of the Thailand Institute of Justice, and Mr. Gary Hill, a correctional specialist in the United States, as well as the participants of the 161st International Training Course. Japanese criminal justice practitioners and UNAFEI faculty members also attended.
The participants discussed the status of the implementation of non-custodial measures in each country and region. In addition, thematic discussions were held on the best practices for non-custodial measures, including multiagency cooperation and public involvement, and the challenges to the implementation of the Tokyo Rules.
Finally, the participants reviewed the report, which summarized the proceedings and general discussion held throughout the Seminar.