19 September 2017
Changes for child visitors to prisons
Changes to the Corrections Regulations set a new age for child visitors and introduce a new review process for all prisoners and visitors.
From 17 September 2017 anyone under 18 seeking to visit a prisoner must apply as a child visitor.
This means they must have guardian consent to apply and be accompanied by an adult when visiting a prisoner. Previously, Corrections Regulations applied the child visitor rule to anyone under 16.
This change brings Corrections into line with the age applied by the Ministry for Vulnerable Children Oranga Tamariki.
Corrections is taking a practical approach to implementing the new rules.
Around 500 16 and 17 year olds are currently approved as adult visitors. While they will be deemed child visitors under the rule, Prison Directors will decide individually whether these visitors need to have someone with them during visits until they turn 18.
Pending applications from 16 and 17 year old visitors will be considered under the old rules.
Read more about the rules for Children Visiting Prisons.