Phil McCarthy on NZ prisons


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From Do Something: NZ Prisons - what's happening in there?

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  • Additional facts In the 2008 – 2009 financial year: Corrections managed 66,635 new community-based sentences and orders. The average cost per offender on a community-based sentence was $9.92 per day or $3,622 per year. (compared with $249.25 per day or $90,977 per year to keep a prisoner) Of these new sentences around 40,300 were community work sentences. (No longer called community service) Offenders serving community work sentences completed almost 3.3 million hours of work in total. CPPS provides significant advice and reports to the judiciary and New Zealand Parole Board to assist their decision making. Ethnicity breakdown for community sentences Maori 44.14 European 36.66 Pacific 9.48 Asian 1.34 Other 8.38
  • Additional facts: Five years ago we had 6401 prisoners (94.3% male), now we have 8236 prisoners (94.2% male) Our prisons can hold 9,131 prisoners in total. New Zealand’s rate of imprisonment per head of population is 185 per 100,000. (Compare with USA at 760 per 1000,000 or Australia at 129 per 100,000). Our rate is quite high compared with the rest of the world. The average cost per offender in prison was $249.25 per day or $90,977 per year. The average length of time prisoners spent on remand between 1 July 2007 and 30 June 2008 was 81.22 days. Ethnicity breakdown Prisons Community sentences Maori 50.64 44.14 European 34.68 36.66 Pacific 11.16 9.48 Asian 2.36 1.34 Other 1.16 8.38
  • Additional facts Prison escapes have fallen by approximately 80 per cent in the past 10 years. The rate of escapes is 0.29 per 100 prisoners. Corrections’ Regional Prisons Development programme saw four new regional prisons and approximately 1600 new beds added to the prison system by the end of 2007. A total of 773 beds have been added to existing prisons since 2004. Mt Eden/Auckland Central Remand Prison (ACRP) After more than 120 years of service Mt Eden Prison is being replaced. Construction activity began in October 2008. Replacing Mt Eden’s facilities will provide a safer, more secure and efficient site operation that better protects staff and the public. The new prison buildings will be secure, functional and provide for cost effective containment of prisoners. Mt Eden Prison and ACRP will operate as one integrated facility once Mt Eden is replaced. The prison will provide accommodation for 866 mainly remand prisoners. The new prison is scheduled to open in mid 2011. Once prisoners are moved into the new facilities, the heritage rated Mt Eden Prison building will be renovated and refurbished for staff and administration use.
  • These are the basic choices about how to approach Corrections services We can put people in prison to punish them for their crimes We can put them in prison to ensure they are unable to commit crimes We can do it as a way of making people “pay” for their offence We can also focus on means of deterring people - putting them off with the potential consequences of a crime Finally, we can try and “rehabilitate” people - to help them to change so that they do not commit any more crimes.
  • Additional facts Corrections bases its programmes on New Zealand and international research and best practice. There is no “one size fits all” solution to reducing re-offending. We spend the most time with high-risk offenders We also target offenders who are motivated to change. Unmotivated offenders are placed on programmes to motivate them to change. Internationally, programmes are considered successful if they achieve a 10% reduction in re-offending.
  • Motivational programmes include short motivational programmes and the faith-based unit Corrections offers the following special treatment units and rehabilitation programmes: sex offender treatment units such as Kia Marama and Te Piriti for child sex offenders violence prevention programme FOCUS programme for youth offenders relapse prevention programmes substance abuse programmes intensive rehabilitation programmes for high risk prisoners rehabilitation programmes addressing the causes of criminal offending Education and employment programmes: general education activities include numeracy and literacy training. I will talk about the Corrections Inmate Employment programmes later Reintegration programmes help prisoners prepare for their return to the community on release from prison. Self-Care Units teach offenders independent living skills, giving them the responsibility to budget, prepare meals, and co-operate with others.
  • Prisons have specialist units addressing the causes of offending and/or helping participants understand and value their culture, motivating them to change their behaviours. 5 Māori Focus Units – Hawkes Bay, Waikeria, Tongariro/Rangipo, Rimutaka and Wanganui Prisons. Māori Focus Units aim to reduce an offender’s risk of re-offending by helping participants understand and value their Maori culture. The Pacific Focus Unit (or Vaka Fa’aola) At Spring Hill Corrections Facility provides a therapeutic environment in which prisoners are encouraged and supported to deal with their motivational barriers to addressing their offending. 6 Drug Treatment Units – Waikeria, Christchurch Men’s, Arohata, Hawkes Bay, Rimutaka Prisons and Spring Hill Corrections Facility. Drug Treatment Units aim to reduce an offender’s risk of re-offending by treating their alcohol and/or other addictions. Violence Prevention Unit – Rimutaka Prison. Provides an intensive group-based violence prevention programme for men who have committed serious violent crime. The Special Treatment Units (STUs) deliver group-based treatment within a therapeutic environment. At Rolleston Prison (Kia Marama) and Auckland Prison (Te Piriti) these are targeted at prisoners with convictions for sexual offences against children. The STUs at Waikeria Prison (Karaka) and Spring Hill Corrections Facility (Puna Tatari) are for men who have repeatedly committed a range of serious crimes. Faith-based Unit – Rimutaka Prison to reduce the risk of re-offending by providing a programme with a strong Christian emphasis, within a supportive environment.
  • Additional facts At May 2009 offenders who identified as Māori: - 50.6% of the prison population - About 44.3% of offenders serving sentences or orders in the community. • The Corrections Māori Strategic Plan 2008 – 2013 focuses on how Corrections can work to succeed for Māori As well as all our mainstream programmes we have a wide range of initiatives targeted at Maori offenders: o Tikanga Maori programmes o Maori Focus Units provide an intensive Maori cultural rehabilitative environment . o Maori Therapeutic Programmes (MTPs) are rehabilitation programmes designed to reduce reoffending by high risk male offenders. o The Bicultural Therapy Model - rehabilitative options for Maori offenders to undertake psychological treatment using western psychological services, Maori cultural based treatment or a combination of both. o Whanau Liaison Workers - specialists employed by Prison Services and form part of the Regional Rehabilitation teams. o Whanau Liaison Workers - ensure that the gains an offender makes while participating in rehabilitation programmes are reinforced on their release. • Support for staff working with Maori offenders - cultural supervision to ensure practices are culturally appropriate. • Ongoing expansion of network of Māori volunteers supporting each prison in their area • Kaiwhakahaere – probation officers assisting Māori offenders with whanau liaison and support and community organisations.
  • Additional facts We assess market trends to identify industries that require qualified workers. We have a programme of work to address the skills deficits and obstacles ex-prisoners face in finding jobs. Prison industries include laundry and kitchen work, plant nurseries and farming. Prisoners are gaining qualifications in horticulture, viticulture, engineering and many more. At November 2008, 51.4 per cent of the prison population and 65.6 per cent of sentenced prisoners were engaged in employment or work related training. This represented 4,043 prisoners engaged in work activities – 2,278 in business-like industries, 146 in Release to Work, 52 in trade and technical training and 1,567 in unit-based activities. The average number of prisoners employed in prison-based work was 3453
  • Don’t forget you can call 0800 JAIL SAFE (0800 524 572). It is a confidential (no caller ID used) and anonymous free-phone number- available for anyone – you, the public, prisoners, visitors and anyone else can call if they are concerned about anything that’s happening with prisoners and the prison/ facility.
  • Phil McCarthy on NZ prisons

    1. 1. Department of Corrections Improving public safety
    2. 2. Corrections does not: <ul><li> arrest or sentence offenders </li></ul><ul><li>decide whether someone accused of a crime is remanded in prison </li></ul><ul><li>decide when a prisoner is released </li></ul><ul><li>set conditions for a community-based sentence </li></ul><ul><li>collect fines </li></ul><ul><li>normally manage offenders under the age of 17 </li></ul>
    3. 3. What does Corrections do? <ul><li>Makes sure offender serves sentence </li></ul><ul><li>8,400 prisoners in 20 prisons </li></ul><ul><li>105,000 community-based sentences and orders in 2008-2009 </li></ul><ul><li>Designs and delivers rehabilitation programmes </li></ul><ul><li>Provides education and job training </li></ul>
    4. 4. Community-based sentences <ul><li>Vast majority of sentences are community-based </li></ul><ul><li>Daily 35,000 offenders on 41,000 sentences and orders </li></ul><ul><li>Huge recent increase in community-based sentences and orders </li></ul>
    5. 5. Prisons – who’s inside? <ul><li>20 prisons </li></ul><ul><li>Around 8,400 prisoners </li></ul><ul><li>Half are Māori (6x rest) </li></ul><ul><li>94% are male </li></ul><ul><li>44% under age of 30 </li></ul><ul><li>60% are in for violent or sexual offences </li></ul>
    6. 6. Internationally:
    7. 7. Prison successes <ul><li>Fewer escapes </li></ul><ul><li>Fewer suicides </li></ul><ul><li>Cellphone blocking technology </li></ul><ul><li>Positive drug tests at all time low </li></ul><ul><li>More drug treatment </li></ul><ul><li>More prisoners receive job training </li></ul>
    8. 8. “ Give them dry bread and water” “ Make them break rocks all day” … and while you’re at it… “ Ensure they become model citizens!” Corrections is faced with conflicting public demands… The two ends of this spectrum are difficult to reconcile!
    9. 9. What’s Prison For? <ul><li>“ We know prisons don’t work, because if they did, they wouldn’t exist” ??? </li></ul><ul><li>Deterrence – the idea that the consequence of a prison sentence may cause potential offenders to stay crime-free  </li></ul><ul><li>Punishment & retribution – punishment is dispensed by taking away an offender’s liberty, not by going to prison to be punished $ $ $ $ </li></ul><ul><li>Incapacitation – to protect the community from offenders who prey on it √ </li></ul><ul><li>Rehabilitation – the belief that, for some, interventuons in orison can change behaviour √ </li></ul>
    10. 10. Incapacitation <ul><li>Long/indefinite sentences have a place </li></ul><ul><ul><li>But only for a tiny minority </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Current longest serving prisoner 40 years plus – and running </li></ul><ul><li>Risk Assessment tools critical and strong link to Parole Board decisions </li></ul><ul><li>Strong community support – practical and emotional, critical to release decisions </li></ul><ul><li>… but is prison overused, even here. Key interfaces with </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Intellectually Disabled </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mental health </li></ul></ul>
    11. 11. Rehabilitation – what works? <ul><li>No ‘one size fits all’ solution </li></ul><ul><li>Tougher sentences alone do not work </li></ul><ul><li>Our programmes work </li></ul><ul><li>We work with those most likely to re-offend </li></ul>
    12. 12. Rehabilitation <ul><li>Motivational programmes </li></ul><ul><li>Special treatment programmes </li></ul><ul><li>Education and employment programmes </li></ul><ul><li>Reintegration programmes </li></ul><ul><li>… and new Rehabilitation & Reintegration Services group </li></ul>
    13. 13. Specialist units at prisons <ul><li>5 Māori Focus Units </li></ul><ul><li>Pacific Focus Unit </li></ul><ul><li>6 Drug Treatment Units </li></ul><ul><li>Violence Prevention Unit </li></ul><ul><li>4 Special Treatment Units </li></ul><ul><li>Faith-based Unit </li></ul>
    14. 14. Succeeding for Māori <ul><li>The major issue </li></ul><ul><li>High percentages of Māori offenders </li></ul><ul><li>Special initiatives for reducing </li></ul><ul><li> re-offending among Māori </li></ul><ul><li>To succeed overall, </li></ul><ul><li>we must succeed for Māori </li></ul><ul><li>Maori Services Team – whose problem? - Ahurewa </li></ul>
    15. 15. Prisoner employment a priority <ul><li>52% of prisoners have </li></ul><ul><li>no qualifications </li></ul><ul><li>Prisoners with jobs on </li></ul><ul><li>release are less likely to </li></ul><ul><li>re-offend </li></ul><ul><li>65% of sentenced prisoners </li></ul><ul><li> in work or training (at Nov 2008) </li></ul><ul><li>We tender fairly using </li></ul><ul><li>market rates </li></ul>
    16. 16. Options 4 Action 1 <ul><li>The Law and Order Debate – Effective Learning and Participation </li></ul><ul><li>Understand limits and purposes of prison </li></ul><ul><li>“ Who do we choose to see?” – Vivienne Stern (eg ID, Mental Health, Addiction issues) </li></ul><ul><li>Links to disadvantage statistics esp re Maori </li></ul><ul><li>Parenting and family issues </li></ul><ul><li>Drug & Alcohol Abuse - often at incredibly young age </li></ul><ul><li>Support ‘Rethinking Crime & Punishment” and use their web resources ( ) </li></ul><ul><li>… and at VUW – Chris Marshall on biblical links and lenses, as well as criminology dept (JP et al) </li></ul>
    17. 17. Options 4 Action 2 <ul><li>What’s Your Parish/group Doing? </li></ul><ul><li>Prisoner Reintegration – ‘Target Communities’ </li></ul><ul><li>Link to, and support, Prison Fellowship NZ </li></ul><ul><li>Prison Volunteering (literacy, connection, training, art etc) – contact Wellington’s Prisons Volunteering coordinator </li></ul><ul><li>Church Visiting – lifestyle evangelism, faith sharing </li></ul><ul><li>(“get God or get a woman” !!) </li></ul><ul><li>Restorative Justice – understand and support – deeply Biblical </li></ul><ul><li>Jobs for offenders – ‘Release-to-work’ and post release. </li></ul><ul><li>Corrections as a Career </li></ul><ul><li>Psychologist? Probation Officer? Policy? Rehab and Reintegration </li></ul>