New Inspector to strengthen correctional service outcomes

Released 30/11/2017

The ACT’s new Inspector of Correctional Services will have the power to inspect ACT’s correctional centres as well as review critical incidents under new laws passed today.

The Inspector of Correctional Services Bill 2017 creates an Inspector of Correctional Services (a statutory authority) to oversee ACT correctional facilities.

The Inspector will undertake major audits and reviews of correctional centres and services every two years, review critical incidents, and examine particular issues referred by the responsible Minister or Director-General.

The new role extends the Government’s ongoing commitment to improving the care, safety and health of detainees in correctional facilities.

The establishment of the Inspector will ensure continuous improvement through the systematic and regular review of correctional centres and services.

The Legislative Assembly will be provided with independent reports from the Inspector, who will also be able to conduct unannounced visits to correctional centres and court cells.

The Inspector will work with, but be distinct from, the Human Rights Commission, ACT Ombudsman, Public Advocate and the Official Visitors program.

This new role delivers on the Government’s commitment made in response to the recommendations by Mr Philip Moss AM following the tragic death in custody of Steven Freeman.

Once appointed, the Inspector will commence its functions at the Alexander Maconochie Centre immediately, and within two years at the Bimberi Youth Justice Centre.

Comments attributable to Minister for Corrections Shane Rattenbury:

“While the ACT has one of the most comprehensive oversight regimes of correctional centres in Australia, we will continue to lead change towards best practice in the Territory.

“The ACT Government will work to ensure the Inspector’s efficient and effective function as it works alongside bodies that have existing oversight responsibilities of correctional facilities.”

- Statement ends -

Section: Shane Rattenbury, MLA | Media Releases

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