On Monday (11 July), 145 senators in Thailand voted in favour of a bill that allows the voluntary chemical castration of convicted sex offenders.
According to Global News, sex offenders who are at high risk of re-offending will be given the option of getting chemically castrated and in return, they will receive a shorter jail time.
The chemical castration is able to reduce testosterone levels in the body, which will lead to a lower sex drive.
However, offenders must get a prescription from a psychiatrist and an internal medicine specialist before the option to be castrated is available to them. Following the procedure, they will be monitored for 10 years and must wear an electronic monitoring bracelet on their person.
Although the bill is unanimously passed, it is still in the process of getting another house vote and a royal endorsement.
Meanwhile, Justice Minister of Thailand Somsak Thepsuthin is also supportive of this chemical castration bill and is eager to see this law being passed as soon as possible.
“I don’t want to see news about bad things happening to women again,” he added.
According to the Public Health Minister of Thailand, a 2013 study found that there were 31,886 reported rape cases that year alone. This means that one rape case happens 15 minutes in Thailand, averaging 87 cases per day.
Nonetheless, not all are supportive of the bill. Women and Men Progressive Movement Foundation director Jaded Chouwilai said he is not convinced that the controversial treatment will tackle sex crimes.
“Offenders should be rehabilitated by changing their minds while in prison. Using punishments such as the death penalty or chemical sterilization only reinforces the idea that offenders do not have the opportunity to be like normal people,” he said.
If the bill is passed, Thailand will be one of the few countries that utilise chemical castration to tackle sex crimes, with others being South Korea, Pakistan, Poland, and at least eight states in America in using chemical castration.
Looking back in Malaysia, would you support this bill if it was to implement in the country? Share your thoughts!