Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Liam Ashley's death senseless and preventable

Liam Ashley's death senseless and preventable - O'Connor

The corrections system failed Liam Ashley and his family, Corrections Minister Damien O'Connor said today.

The Corrections Inspector's report of the investigation into the circumstances surrounding Liam's death while being transported from court to Auckland Central Remand Prison on August 24, 2006 was given to Liam's family on Friday.

Mr O'Connor said the report was thorough. It finds that the Corrections Department and Chubb were unable to prevent Liam's death by a fellow prisoner by failing to strictly apply their own regulations and keep him apart from older prisoners while being transported.

"This young man's brutal and senseless killing could have been avoided had sufficient emphasis been placed on the regulation that youth be kept separate from adult prisoners during transit.

"There were inaccurate inputs of crucial information to Corrections' data management system, a failure to pass on necessary information, and a failure to take all necessary steps to keep Liam separate.

"I have enormous sympathy for the Ashley family. The system let them and their son down."

Mr O'Connor said that as a result of the investigation there will be an overhaul of the way prison transfers are managed, and the department must make changes wherever they are necessary.

"The report contains recommendations that will amount to an overhaul of the entire processes around prison transfers, including legal obligations with contracting partners. This includes the department issuing specific instructions to ensure that a higher priority is given to the separation of youth, and ensuring that information accompanying prisoners is at all times clear, complete and accurate.

"I have instructed the department's chief executive to inform me urgently how he will carry out these changes.

"Immediately following Liam's death, I directed the department to ensure that prisoners under 18 are kept separate outside of prison in all circumstances. This will continue to stand.

"Tragically, the changes we make will not bring Liam back, but I hope the Ashley family can be reassured that we are doing everything we can to prevent similar tragedies occurring in the future. I have a responsibility to ensure changes are made to prevent such a tragedy from happening again," Mr O'Connor said.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Veronika Meduna: The Kaikoura Rebuild

A Scoop Foundation Investigation

Friday will be a big day for people north of Kaikōura – and for hundreds of construction workers who are racing to reopen State Highway 1 in time for the holiday season.

By the afternoon, the South Island’s main transport corridor will be open to traffic again, more than a year after a magnitude 7.8 earthquake mangled bridges and tunnels, twisted rail tracks and buried sections of the road under massive landslides. More>>

 

BPS HYEFU WYSIWYG: Labour's Budget Plans, Families Package

“Today we are announcing the full details of the Government’s Families Package. This is paid for by rejecting National’s tax cuts and instead targeting spending at those who need it most. It will lift 88,000 children out of poverty by 2021." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Defence Spending, Alabama, And Dolly Parton

The spending lavished on Defence projects to meet the risks that could maybe, possibly, theoretically face New Zealand in future is breath-taking, given how successive governments have been reluctant to spend even a fraction of those amounts on the nation’s actual social needs. More>>

ALSO:

Members' Bills: End Of Life Choice Bill Passes First Reading

The End of Life Choice Bill in the name of David Seymour has been sent to a select committee for consideration by 76 votes to 44. It is the third time Parliament has voted on the issue in recent decades and the first time such a Bill has made it over the first hurdle. More>>

ALSO:

State Sector: MPI Survives Defrag Of Portfolios

The Ministry for Primary Industries will not be split under the new government, but will instead serve as an overarching body for four portfolio-based entities focused on fisheries, forestry, biosecurity and food safety. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Vulnerable Kids, RNZ Funding, And Poppy

The decision to remove the word ‘vulnerable’ from the Ministry for Vulnerable Children could well mark a whole shift in approach to the care of children in need... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages