Corrections ensures that prisoners in New Zealand are contained humanely.
We operate in accordance with the Corrections Act 2004 and Corrections Regulations 2005. The Sentencing Act 2002 and the Parole Act 2002 also have particular relevance to our operations.
Under the Corrections Act, we must:
- make public safety paramount when managing offenders
- administer all sentences in a safe, secure, humane and effective manner
- operate facilities in accordance with New Zealand legislation and based on other agreements (such as the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners)
- ensure that offenders are treated fairly by providing them with information about the rules, obligations, and entitlements that affect them, and ensuring that decisions made about them are fair and reasonable and that they have access to an effective complaints procedure.
While administering all sentences in a safe, secure and humane manner is at the core of the work we do, public safety and reducing re-offending are our ultimate goals.
We have and will continue to focus on ensuring that while prisoners are in our custody we will do what we can to prepare them for their eventual release back into the community.
We provide a range of successful rehabilitative, educational and employment-related programmes aimed at reducing rates of re-offending and we are committed to continuing to improve and add to these.
How are human rights addressed?
- Legislation and policy that incorporates human rights considerations.
- More prisoners involved in education, training and employment.
- Rehabilitative programmes, specialist treatment units, mothers and babies units, reintegration units.
- Volunteers and cultural advisers, development of a culturally related strategy.
- Developments in monitoring and inspection provisions, establishment of the Professional Standards Unit.
- Commitment to increase the number of drug and alcohol treatment programme places for prisoners from 500, 1000 per annum by 2012.
- Commitment to increase the number of prisoners gaining skills and work experience.
- Embedded literacy and numeracy training for prisoners.
- Smokefree prisons, to improve the health of prisoners and reduce the chance of fire-related incidents.
- Prisoners’ links with family/whanau enhanced.
- The needs of women in prison are recognised.
- Primary health care for all prisoners.
Human rights in contract managed prisons
Contract managed prisons in New Zealand are subject to the same scrutiny as public prisons.
The Prison Inspectorate and the Office of the Ombudsmen will retain their investigative powers and a fulltime prison monitor will be based in any contract managed prison.
The Corrections Chief Executive will at all times retain overall responsibility for prisoners and will be provided with regular reports from the prison monitor on the contractor’s performance.
Find out more information on how we manage offenders in prison.
View our four-year strategic plan Creating Lasting Change.