From our Minister
It’s been an eye opening first month for me as Corrections Minister, but the one thing that has really come through is the quality and commitment of staff.
I asked for the Corrections portfolio and it’s one I’m invested in. I’ve long been a believer New Zealand should not have such high rates of imprisonment and I know there is a real opportunity to make positive change.
As you know there are wider social factors leading to offending, but these people too often end up at Corrections’ door. Corrections staff don't have easy jobs dealing with prisoners, who have often been conditioned by bad experiences and made poor decisions.
On my visits so far to Auckland Prison, Auckland South Corrections Facility, Auckland Regional Women’s Corrections Facility and Waikeria Prison, I have been impressed with the professionalism of staff in what can sometimes be very difficult situations, and how much they care about their work and the positive impacts they can have on people’s lives.
As Minister of Corrections I want to reduce the prison muster by 30% in the next 15 years. To be successful we will need to tackle the causes of offending – from mental health, to drug and alcohol abuse, education, housing and poverty.
This isn’t something any one government department, organisation or politician can do on their own. It will require a collaborative approach. Corrections staff, the many volunteers in prisons, and the organisations we work with, all have a role to play.
I am proud to be the Minister of Corrections and look forward to working with staff, non-government and Māori organisations, and communities in the months and years ahead to make a difference for all New Zealanders.
Hon. Kelvin Davis
Minister of Corrections