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L'impacte de les TIC i Internet als centres penitenciaris

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(Silence) Juanma, inmate. "I will consider all the options because I want to be occupied. I chose information technology and not only working in a workshop because it was completely new for me. Maybe I felt embarrassed of my ignorance to the subject and about someone else opinion. But here (in prison) I don't feel ashamed anymore. I started studying and now I can create my folders, I can write..." Juanma is one of the many inmates who attend every day unit 3 in Lledoner's Penitenciaty Centre where the ITC's classroom is. It is a place where they can access to several computer technologies. They can listen to music, edit some pictures or visit the wikipedia. The ITC's classroom is supervised by two instructors a few hours a day. They help inmates in the learning process and to get familiar with new technologies. Manuel, instructor: "There are games as well. Not only as simple as solitaire but also very educational ones such as chess". Everybody is allowed to reach their own objectives. If someone wants to learn how to create an Excel sheet to control the monthly expenses he can just do it." The ITC's classroom is open for everybody with no exception. The room has one single hard disk, the one of the instructor, it stores all the information. The other terminals are connected via "switch". Every inmate has a username, a password and an own folder. David, inmate. "I come to write texts for letters and for appeals. I also visit the wikipedia, watch some programs and listen to music." Raul, inmate: "When the summer comes there are no other activities. There's no school and, either you like it or not, you can spend the day in here. There is too much leisure time so I come here to listen to music and to switch myself off for a while." Elio, inmate: "I am already attending the ITC's classroom for two months. In here, I can write songs and the instructor prints them thus I have them in paper. I can also learn." ICT is considered a cross action in Lledoners. They also help to develop creative experiencies. During one month, three inmates produced a short film based on stop-motion technique. Shot after shot they brought into life the characters and created a story. David, Julius and Francisco, inmates: "We developed some models and then we chose this one because it gave us wider chances. Then we made up the characters and picked the ones that could play in the film. We took a picture with every character's movement. At the end, afer introducing the pictures one after each other in the computer, you can make a short film. (Sound of seals and penguins) All computers in the class have installed free software and the terminals are recycled. The Association in charge of this project is Androminas. The old computers are picked up, repaired and reintroduced into the market. The environmental benefits are obvious. Nacho, computer literacy instructor: "80% of the energy, that a computer will consume all along its life it's spent during the manufacturing process. This is very important information. 1500 litres of water and fossil fuel are needed to manufacture a computer. So, the best idea is recycling computers. As we use a simple network system based on a single server you can use low-level computers it is to say, recycled and assembled. For the user they are as new computers." It is not possible to understand the presence of ICT in prison without FIAS, the Social Action and Innovation Foundation. In 2001, they brought into prison the model of the network known as Omnia. Their work began with women and youth but has expanded to all Catalan prisons. Maria, FIAS: "The initial purpose was to use the computers, according to the knowledge, needs and motivation of each inmate. The first activities were based on knowledge, training, etc. And not only with inmates but throughout the entire community. Somehow, our idea was to develop cross dynamic and practical activities into the prison community. For professionals, inmates, etc. So that everyone could work with computers and technology. (Music) One of the best examples of an ICT-Omnia in prison can be found in the Women's Penitentiary Centre of Barcelona. There is a waiting list of more than 20 inmates due to the success of the activity. In this special case, it is not just an Internet access but a place to have a look into the outside world and a creative and communicative experience. Marcela, instructor: "In prison, there is no privacy because you sleep in a room with more inmates and do everything with other inmates being able to have your own folder, your own documents, working on your own with the computer makes you cope the routine. Being able to choose the activity and to work with a team makes you feel more in control. And that's what you do not have in here: control on what you decide to do." There is no formal training or a traditional learning model in classroom. Women come here looking for answers to their own needs and it is the instructor who motivates them to work further. Ruby, Raquel, Deborah, Manuela, inmates: "My daughter used to ask me but I wasn't even able to switch on a computer. I didn't realize it was so important. After release, the first thing I will do is to buy a computer. Now I really need it. You can find solutions to any problem on the Internet. Save documents or delete them. I didn't know what those buttons on the monitor were, or were meant for and didn't care. "View" I do not know what it means...I did not care! Hyperlink...and I thought: what is that? Now it's great. I can create a website, a power-point, write a letter for my son attaching pictures and drawings to it... Internet is a window and ICT-Omnia is the second one. I see another aspect to all this. I wait outside, at 9 o'clock, every morning for the instructor to open the room!" Some ITC classroms do also offer "ACTIC", Competence Accreditation on ITC's knowledge. This is an official accreditation issued by the Generalitat de Catalunya it is a official certificate of ITC's knowledge and skills. There are 40 inmates in Lledoners interested on being trained to reach the level of the test. Nacho, computer literacy instructor: "It has its charms because it is not only a ITC's course but inmates can also get an official certificate and something such as a title they can touch so it increases the number of interested inmates on joining the course. It also improves motivation because they feel their release closer than ever". Schools are other spaces where learning and training is possible in prison. Adult learning programmes are developed there. Inmates can attend literacy courses, secondary education and vocational training in collaboration with Institut Obert de Catalunya and even get a university degree in collaboration with UNED. Silvia, inmate: "Ten years ago I got my primary school degree in prison. It is just another way of fulfilling time spent in prison. I know it is very difficult to get a job outside because secondary school is usually required. So I decided to start in here. I want to keep on studying after finishing the 3 exams I have left. I want follow a vocational training course because I want to find a job when being on a more open regime. Working and having a twelve years old son leaves you not too much free time to study. I can do it now whenever I can, either at 6 o'clock in the morning or 10 o'clock at night." This is the first year for Silvia using Internet as a support tool for her studies. She saves on photocopies and printings and she can also access the study material available online. Silvia, inmate: "Last year, when I started, only photocopies and dossier were used, etc... I had a very large amount of paper. Nowadays, Internet connection makes it easier. We have much more time to find information. It is much better." Although access to email and social networks is not allowed inmates can acess the Internet to make their own searching and download documents. But this prison in Barcelona is not an exception. Although there is no direct connection from schools, all centres with ICTs make possible for students to acess any educational resource. In those prisons with no Internet access, such as Lledoners, make it really difficult for students following a distance educational course. Alejandro, inmate: "There are lots of documents, tests and tutoring sessions to download or do online that we have no access to. It's like falling asleep and waking up when watching a movie... You miss some parts". Josep, inmate: "I think they are always afraid of the wrong use that inmates can make of these tools. My experience in prison, and I am already six year in here, is that whenever we can enjoy from a benefit we use it wrong and just spoil it. They are afraid inmates abuse of this benefit. Inmates themselves should make other inmates be aware that when having a benefit it is important to use it right." Jon, inmate: "It's an open window to the real life although we are imprisoned. It is a way of being updated of what is going on in the world at any given moment." Juan, inmate: "It is, for many reasons, a highway to information. We feel helpless without Internet access. We're out of range." Lledoners will have very soon Internet access in all classrooms. This kind of connection, although being very important for everybody, makes necessary certain limits and instructions to be followed for a save navigation, though. Jose Luis, Lledoner's regime vice director: "Internet must be available in certain areas. It should help inmates in their future life on release improving their possibilities. It would be absurd not doing it when having the opportunity to access education as if they were on release. Taking into account the limitations of a prison centre, though. Regarding limitations, in a prison, they are understood as: you can not do whatever you want to do whenever you want to. You cannot access the Internet at 5 o'clock in the morning because at that time lights must be switched off and it means no access to a computer. At a different time of the day, establishing limits, controls or with the supervision of an instructor, this access wouldn't be a problem." Nacho, computer literacy instructor: "Internet access is limited, of course. The computers have installed a firewall and there's always professional supervision on what we are doing." FIAS agrees that Internet access must be limited. Control and instructions are needed but Internet must be available in jail. Maria, FIAS: "It increases opportunities of participation, linking people outside and inside. Prison is not just a closed container. Right now I am inside later I will be outside. The idea is to build a bridge in between so that inmates can receive input from outside. Obviusly, Internet access is not such as the one of a cybercafé. In here inmates do not arrive and access any webpage they want as it may happen outside. Usually you can access any page you want. It is to say, some WebPages are forbidden in here. But outside offensive WebPages are also forbidden such as the ones offending someone else. Neither in here, it is just another tool to be used." Internet access in prison is not only requested by inmates. Prison libraries of the public libraries network don't have internet access yet. It makes it impossible to collaborate with other libraries to share online resources. Libraries will use a new application soon, the Millenium, it is an online catalogue to ease exchange of books and documents. Internet is also necessary in this special case so that inmates start using it. Anna, librarian: "The server where this catalogue is stored is somewhere else. Not here. It can be found in the Diputació. What does it mean? To catalogue, borrow or consult our list of books available we need Internet access. Therefore, this is a very bad situation." ITC's and Internet access are available in many prisons to contribute with their potential. There is a long way to go but this process goes on: expanding the world, enabling new ways of learning, knowledge, creation and communication. (Music)

Video Details

Duration: 17 minutes and 16 seconds
Country: Spain
Language: Catalan
Genre: None
Producer: Xarxa Punt TIC
Director: Xarxa Punt TIC
Views: 348
Posted by: punttic on Jun 18, 2010

“Jornada sobre TIC i presó. Les presons en l'era d'Internet”. Sota aquest títol, s'ha celebrat una jornada que destaca la importància que tenen les tecnologies de la informació i la comunicació i Internet en els processos d'aprenentatge. També als centres penitenciaris.
A més de les ponències i els grups de treball, durant la trobada es va projectar el vídeo “L'impacte de les TIC i Internet als centres penitenciaris”, elaborat per l'Oficina Tècnica de la Xarxa Punt TIC. És tracta d'un reportatge que reflecteix el punt de vista dels actors i participants sobre l'ús, riscos i possibilitats de les TIC a les presons a través de tres dels seus projectes: les Cyberaules, les escoles i els Punt TIC-Òmnia.

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