Some of you have received copies of the recent book, Dignity of the Individual, concerning prisons in the Western Hemisphere. Others can read it, in its entirety on the National CURE website,
http://www.curenational.org/new/index.html under "resources."
This first edition was presented to representatives of the OAS on June 26. It was warmly appreciated by these staff members of the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights especially since the Commission is presently studying the prison issue.
On July 18th, we received a letter from Luis Alberto Rodriguez, Director of the Summits of the American Secretariat, expressing the Secretariat gratitude for receiving our publication.
"The Secretariat recognizes the efforts of CURE to promote the human rights of individual citizens by publishing reports on the prison systems of the Member States of the OAS, with particular attention to the prominent regional human rights instruments...This...provides a valuable consultative instrument to governments and decision makers in the OAS system. In this respect, we thank you for your contribution."
Finally, we have received numerous compliments from individuals. One of the most positive came from an informal email from my friend Prof. Rick Wilson. Rick heads the human rights section of the law school at American University here in DC. "I just got the book "Dignity of the Individual" in the mail today. What an impressive job you did in pulling that off, with all the countries included! Congratulations to you and your team.* It looks fantastic."
Now, we are preparing for the second edition, to be published in February, 2007, which will:
a) be in the languages of the countries represented: French, English, Portuguese and Spanish
b) include corrections, updates, and expansions where appropriate, of the first edition.
We request, therefore, that you work with us on this second edition, and agree to a) review the presentation, in the first edition, of the prisons especially the report on your own country, and b) prepare to submit any needed corrections, updates or expansions. We are particularly interested in examples of current rehabilitation, reentry, and family preservation programs that might be presented in the second edition. Also, any major prison reform efforts under way especially in your country.
Those who have worked on translations of the first edition will be asked to update their translations in accord with the final editing of the second edition. We also need more persons who can translate from English into Spanish.
Our tentative schedule for this second edition is as follows:
Inputs received from reviewers in all the countries by October 1, 2006
Editing and packaging of second edition completed by November 1, 2006
Translations completed by December 1, 2006
Final reviews completed by December 15, 2006
Submission to printer by January 1, 2007
February 1, 2007 Publication
Mid-February, 2007 Presentation here in Washington, DC, to the
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights
We heartily thank you for your very productive work on the successful first edition, and we now ask you to confirm that you will work with us on this second edition, in accord with the above schedule.
Charles Sullivan Executive Director International CURE
* The second edition, like the first edition, will again have the excellent packaging and production by Rudy and Betty Cypser. We will also have the photography of Alan Pogue. But, for this second edition, Alan is planning to travel in the Americas to take pictures of positive prison programs as well as the prison problems. Finally, we expect the second edition like the first edition will have numerous volunteers. This time, however, we plan to include the names of the volunteers in the second edition who help in bringing about this second edition.