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MECF decision announced - Serco Contract Not Renewed

News Release

MECF decision announced

Please attribute to Ray Smith, Chief Executive, Corrections

The Department of Corrections has decided not to renew the contract with Serco to manage the Mt Eden Corrections Facility. Staff at the prison have been informed of the decision this morning.

For some time I have been considering whether the current contract is the best way to deliver services for this prison.

I have decided that it is not and so I have invoked a break point of March 2017 contained in the current contract that allows non-renewal after six years.

In July this year I invoked the Step In clause in the contract, effectively giving management of the prison to Corrections. I made the decision to Step Infollowing serious allegations involving the safety of prisoners and staff and the emergence of ‘fight club’ videos and the use of contraband. Since then, Corrections has been working to remedy issues staff have identified at MECF.

The Chief Inspector of Corrections has completed his investigation, with independent oversight from the Ombudsman, into MECF and I received a copy of this last week.

Serco has begun legal action in relation to this report and until this is settled I am unable to comment publicly on it.

I am considering options for the future management of MECF and will provide advice on these to the Corrections Minister early next year.

Corrections will work with Serco to ensure a smooth transition to the contract’s end.

ENDS


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