For young people detained in the Swedish town of Umeå, custody has gotten a lot “cozier.” Teenagers suspected of committing a crime are now being placed in a “softer” room, complete with a sofa and flat-screen television, Nyheter Idag reported referring to the SVT network.
Umeå police have set up a new room in the detention center for young people between the ages of 15 and 17 who are suspected of committing a crime or have been detained for other reasons.
In a photo of the new room, an armchair, a coffee table and a flat-screen television are seen on the wall.
“An ordinary detention cell is very plain and has a heavy iron door that closes, and then you are locked up there. This room is a little more adapted and a little softer, with a sofa and an armchair. It is a little cozier,” saysid Carl-Johan Ekelund, group manager for station officers in the Västerbotten district.
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He added that the new furniture “should withstand a little more,” considering who will use it.
“According to the law, you are a child until 18 years of age and should be treated accordingly. Sweden has received criticism internationally about how we have previously taken care of detained children that they are locked up and very isolated there,” explained Carl-Johan Ekelund.
“But now, with this, we can find other opportunities to take care of them and look after them better and get more compassionate contact,” he noted.
Last year, a Syrian migrant was paid out €80,000 by the Swedish state despite raping a Swedish girl. The court argued he deserved the money since he was under 18 when the rape occurred, yet received an adult sentence, which the court deemed too “harsh.”