Over the last week a number of concerns have been raised regarding how Corrections manages prisoner mail. We take our responsibility for safety very seriously, and on this occasion we have not met our own high standards.

We expect that members of the public may be concerned about receiving unwanted correspondence from prisoners.  In response to this, Corrections has set up a phone number 0800 345 006 and a dedicated email address mailcomplaints@corrections.govt.nzfor people to report any concerns they have. Both the email and hot line are staffed weekdays only. Voice messages can be left after hours and staff will respond.

Corrections has also put in place a number of steps to ensure this doesn’t happen again.  The mail of prisoners who have been identified with extremist ideologies and/or registered victims will be immediately centralised pending a full review carried out by an external party.

It will remain this way until the review has concluded the new process in place will prevent this from ever happening again.

This has also highlighted the need for us to look at the current legislation and how it is being applied and whether it is fit for purpose. We are currently providing further advice to the government on this point.

Corrections wants to reiterate our unreserved apology for the distress that this has caused to those impacted by the tragic events of 15 March.