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Australia calls on Kiwi expertise

3 August 2006

Australia calls on Kiwi expertise

New Zealand Corrections Officers will soon be helping the Tasmania Prison Service commission its new Risdon Prison Complex.

Twelve to sixteen Corrections Officers will be seconded to the Tasmania Prison Service for approximately fifteen weeks from mid August.

“It is a compliment that our staff are being sought out by overseas jurisdictions,” says Corrections Chief Executive Barry Matthews.

“As ambassadors for Corrections, staff take with them professionalism and expertise to share with our Australian counterparts,” he says.

Ginna Webster, Manager of Organisation Development of the Tasmania Prison Service, says that her colleagues were impressed by New Zealand’s system during a visit by a delegation in May.

“New Zealand Corrections Officers have a wealth of experience and knowledge that will be invaluable in getting Risdon up and running,” says Ms. Webster.

“They will help ensure a smooth and managed transition of prisoners from their existing facility and provide expertise in the case management of prisoners,” says Mr Matthews.

The Tasmanian service is in the process of implementing an offender management system similar that used at Corrections. “The experience and expertise of our Officers will be invaluable,” he says.

Mr Matthews believes the secondments will be mutually beneficial. “Our Corrections Officers will help the Tasmanians and bring back valuable experience to the New Zealand service.”

He says the staff on secondment will boost the professional skills of staff. “There has been a huge amount of interest in the roles with Corrections Officers recognising the career prospects the secondment can provide.”
These are rich job experiences, which make Corrections an attractive place to work he says.

Mr Matthews said the feedback from previous secondments such as East Timor and Vanuatu is that staff find these experiences hugely rewarding. “The transfer of knowledge also highlights the differences in practises and the experience often reinforces the good things we do here.”

“I congratulate staff on their appointments. I urge them to make the most of the experience and to note the things that are working well in Australia so they can share them with staff here.”

ENDS

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