Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Why build a private prison when we have empty beds

PSA Media Release
8 March 2012
For Immediate Use

Why build a private prison when we have empty beds in public ones?

Today’s announcement that the Government is going ahead with plans to build a private prison at Wiri is beyond comprehension, says the PSA.

Crime rates are down, projected prison numbers are down by over 3,000 and we have 1,200 empty beds in prisons across the country. The last thing we need is a new 960 bed privately built and run prison.

“This Government is impacting on services to New Zealanders by cutting jobs right across the public sector, yet it’s prepared to spend $900 million to build and operate a prison that we don’t even need,” says PSA National Secretary Richard Wagstaff.

“Pressure is on other areas of the Justice system to make savings; every police district has been asked to cut budgets by 5 per cent and national headquarters and the police college have been asked to find 15 percent. This is not a time to throw around money that is badly needed in other areas.

“The so-called cost effectiveness that Finance Minister Bill English talks of can only be achieved by the contractor paying poor wages and employing less staff. Overseas studies have found that projected savings evaporated and that privately managed prisons scored bacly on security and maintaining order and control.

“The most efficient action to take is not to build a new private prison at Wiri and to put money into the Justice system where it can be most effectively used.

“Early intervention programmes are much cheaper than sending someone to prison.

“With Police moving resources into preventative crime and aiming at a 19 per cent drop in people passing through the justice system in the next few years, surely there’s a better investment for society than a prison we don’t need,” says Richard Wagstaff.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Public Sector Still Shrinking: Record Low Number Of 'Backroom Bureaucrats'

Ongoing restraint in the public sector and a focus on better frontline services has seen a further reduction in the number of core Government employees, State Services Minister Paula Bennett says. More>>


Disobeying The Law: Police Censorship Of Crime Research “An Outrage”

The Green Party is calling on Police Minister Michael Woodhouse to ensure Police scrap controversial contracts that place onerous restrictions on academic researchers’ access to Police data, the Green Party says. More>>


Q+A Transcript: Groser ‘Not Expecting’ Failure At UN Climate Talks

‘I will be very surprised if we don’t get an agreement. I think it’s a completely different situation to Copenhagen for a number of reasons. We’ve got a much more realistic negotiating proposal on the table. Secondly, I think the science has strengthened...’ More>>


Greenpeace Protest:

Climate Talks, Immigration And Housing: PM's Post Cabinet Press Conference

Prime Minister John Key began by talking about his recent attendance at the APEC and ASEAN summits. He segued neatly from the opportunities available in Vietnam to outlining his upcoming itinerary which includes Malta, Paris and Berlin. More>>


After Urgent Law Change: Beneficiaries Urged To Act Immediately

I am hoping that thousands more people will be enabled to lodge their review... people without internet, who don't even realise that this has been happening. If just a fraction of the people on facebook can help others to put in reviews tomorrow it could improve so many more peoples Christmas. More>>


Auckland: Phil Goff To Run For Mayor In 2016

Phil Goff has today announced his decision to stand as an Independent candidate for Mayor of Auckland next year... As Mayor, Phil Goff will focus on a number of issues that directly impact on the lives of Aucklanders, including tackling traffic congestion and increasing the housing supply. More>>


Foreign Affairs: Mike Moore To Step Down As US Ambassador

Yvonne and I are giving notice to MFAT that we will be leaving the Post just before Christmas on the 16th December... I am now the longest serving continuous Ambassador to the US. I didn’t seek this job but felt I should do it because great issues were at stake. The time was ripe for it. More>>


Fox Glacier: Seven Dead In Helicopter Crash

The operation to recover the victims of Saturday’s helicopter crash at Fox Glacier is a technically challenging task calling for specialist skills in an unforgiving environment, says operation commander Inspector John Canning. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news