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Corrections? That's a good question

Simon Power National Party Law & Order Spokesman

10 May 2006

Corrections? That's a good question

The Corrections Minister should explain why he and his department are unable to supply information on issues that go to the very core of their job, says National's Law & Order spokesman, Simon Power.

He has released a list of issues which the Minister and his department cannot answer or supply information on, because they either do not have statistics or they can't be bothered to gather them.

"Those issues range from not knowing how many inmates suffer from an acute mental illness, how many are on psychiatric medication, and how many failed to complete drug rehab programmes, to how many are on work schemes.

"This is astounding.

"These are very important issues, and you would imagine that a department on top of its game would be able to supply information on them like a shot.

"Damien O'Connor should know what's going on in his own department.

"They can't do their jobs properly if they don't know what's going on behind their own walls.

"And the only way they can have any chance of sending people back into the community better equipped to live a crime-free and productive life is if they do their jobs properly.

"It is disturbing that a government department as crucial as Corrections says it is unable to address so many core issues.

"The department and its Minister must have answers to these questions if they are to be held accountable to Parliament for their use of taxpayers' money."

Corrections doesn’t know

How many drug and alcohol programmes have been provided over the past six years (WQ 2792).
Where inmates undertake drug and alcohol programmes (WQ 2849).
How many inmates are ineligible for rehabilitation programmes because they are identified drug users (WQ 2851).
How many remand inmates are placed in employment while in prison (WQ 2806).
How many inmates under 18 receive a minimum of 15 hours vocational training (WQ 2788)

The profit/losses resulting from inmate employment activities (WQ 4384).
How many inmates are engaged in vocational training (WQ 2797).
How many inmates under the age of 18 receive at least two hours of education a day (WQ 2787)
How many offenders complete the Making Our Drivers Safe programme (WQ 3688).
How many Making Our Drivers Safe programmes have been delivered (WQ 3695).
The turnover of Corrections' property management staff (WQ 3739).

How many inmates suffer from an acute mental illness (WQ 2455).
How many inmates are on psychiatric medication (WQ 2796).
How many inmates stayed in (or were removed from) drug-free units (WQ 1000, 1001).
How many inmates are in Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous programmes (WQ 1003).
Why inmates fail to complete drug and alcohol programmes (WQ 2793).

How many inmates fail to complete a drug programme due to a relapse in use (WQ 2856).
How many inmates are transferred and the mode of transport used (WQ 3047, 3048, 3049, 3051*).
Why prisoners are transferred (WQ 3052).
How many inmates are transferred to be closer to family (WQ 3771, 3772).
How many inmates fail to complete rehabilitation due to transfer (WQ 3055).

The number of temporary releases, and their duration (WQ 1005, 1006, 1007, 1008)

This is Corrections' own policy
Note 1: WQ = Parliamentary Written Question Note 2: National is waiting on answers to 46 questions that are past the due date, some by more than a month.


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