Zurich officials are rethinking their criminal youth reintegration policy after an outcry over a costly rehabilitation of a convicted teenager. Instead of going to prison for stabbing another teenager, “Carlos” was put on a rehabilitation programme which cost canton Zurich CHF29,000 ($31,300) a month.
Eighteen-year-old Carlos (not his real name) is the son of a Swiss father and a Brazilian mother and has convictions for robbery, weapon possession and drug use. Two years ago, when still a minor, he stabbed and wounded another teenager. His case was brought to public attention by a television documentary at the end of August. Afterwards, a public media outcry followed, and Carlos – who had been living in a special home – was sent to jail. “For his own protection,” the police said.
Justifying the high cost, the private company in charge of the rehabilitation programme pointed out that Carlos was being cared for around the clock by ten people, including a social worker who lived with him full time and a personal Thai boxing trainer. (SRF- Reporter- Tagesschau- Rundschau. RTS le 19:30. swissinfo.ch)