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Corrections spends $5,000 on electronic consoles

Corrections spends $5,000 on electronic consoles, violent games

The Corrections Department has spent almost $5,000 on Playstation and Xbox consoles and games for prisoners, says National’s Law & Order spokesman, Simon Power.

He is releasing answers to parliamentary questions that show Corrections bought eight Playstation and Xbox consoles and 58 games for prisoners in Ngawha, Rimutaka and Waikeria prisons.

“It is unbelievable that this cash-strapped department is able to find nearly $5,000 for this sort of entertainment for prisoners.

“I would like to know if Corrections Minister Damien O’Connor thinks it is appropriate for prisoners to have access to violent role-playing computer games where characters fight with their fists, baseball bats, rakes, stakes, samurai swords, handguns, shotguns, machine guns, and chain guns.

“This department does not have enough funds to establish a sufficient number of beds in drug and alcohol units and yet it can find the money to buy consoles and the type of games that contribute nothing at all towards the rehabilitation of prisoners.

“In fact, I imagine these games do exactly the opposite.

“It is time Damien O’Connor fronted up to the public of New Zealand to explain why his department is supplying gaming consoles, LCD TVs, and under-floor heating to prisoners while it is putting only 19% of them into work schemes.

“It is time this Government got serious about rehabilitating prisoners instead of providing them with useless distractions while they are serving their time.”

Ends

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