San Vittore yes, San Vittore no. In recent days in Milan, the idea of closing the prison in Piazza Filangieri has (re) returned to the fore by moving the prisoners to another area of the city – evidently more in the suburbs – and giving the structure a new life. The center-right has brought the issue back to the center of the debate, with candidate for mayor Luca Bernardo who has included the “problem” in his program in view of the upcoming municipal elections.
The head of pediatrics of the Fatebenefratelli, supported by Lega, Fratelli d’Italia and Forza Italia, also put forward alternative proposals. One would be to transform the prison house into the seat of cultural structures such as the European Library, which was to be born in City Life but which was never built. Or, we still read in the “good intentions” of the center-right, to move prisoners to find “spaces for temporary exhibitions of sculptures, paintings or artistic installations, home to photographic and artistic collections of important Milanese bodies or institutions, rather than a space to exhibit the many works that lie in the cellars and deposits of important Milanese and Italian museums “. In short: culture, exhibitions and museum instead of the prison, preserving the structure, dating back to 1879, and ’embellishing’ it with a public park around it.
The strongest contrary voice came from the Radicals, who have always focused on the centrality – even geographic – of prisons in cities to avoid excluding inmates from social life. On Monday evening, on the occasion of the “Prison and territory” conference, Lorenzo Lipparini, councilor for participation, active citizenship and open data of the municipality as well as leader of “MilanoRadicale”, among whose ranks there is also Luigi Pagano, former director of San Vittore.
“Milan is the only Italian city that has four prisons within its municipal territory, although the names may be misleading by indicating other realities in the hinterland. The prison population is an integral part of the city’s population and must have guaranteed services “, remarked Lipparini. “In fact, the quality of a society is measured by the quality of its prisons. Access to care, civic services and electoral rights for those who have kept them are fundamental. The right to work is a prerequisite for reintegration into society as per the constitution. : the prison sentence is designed for the recovery and reintegration of the person for whom the prisons must be fully connected with the surrounding society, also to guarantee support associations to fully carry out their work, for the relatives of prisoners to reach them with ease, and to the prisoners to be able to go out to follow any alternative measures “, reiterated the radical exponent. And again: “If such a path is carried out, more security is developed as the phenomenon of recidivism by offenders decreases. We Radicals are the only ones who pose such a theme to ourselves by placing it at the center of our electoral program for upcoming administrative “.
That of the past few hours is only the latest “appeal”, in chronological order, by the Radicals to the candidate of the center-right. “Bernardo proposes to ‘eliminate’ San Vittore from the eyes and hearts of the Milanese, to ‘redevelop’ the neighborhood in which it is located”, the “punzecchiata” of Pagano and Lipparini that arrived in recent days. “Regardless of the interventions on the neighborhood, this is a proposal without perspective, because it says nothing about the places chosen to create a new prison, which neither Opera nor Bollate could ever become. On the contrary, recovering the two wards still closed of San Vittore would also solve the problem of overcrowding “, they argued, then underlining that” the prison must remain an integral part of the city, so that the prisoners who must be able to reintegrate in the city as best as possible, also to reduce the risk, are an integral part of society. of recidivism “.
It is undeniable, however, that the situation in San Vittore is not the best, with obvious overcrowding. Will the solution be to close the prison in Piazza Filangieri and open another?