Engineering Instructor Russell Hawes with the five-star certificateChristchurch Men’s Prison (CMP)’s engineering industry training has joined the ranks of businesses like Downer, Terra Cat and Ravensdown, with their new 5-star rating in the +IMPAC PREQUAL safety assessment.

The +IMPAC PREQUAL programme is a qualitative assessment process that identifies safe contractors, with CMP gaining the highest possible ranking, acknowledging its departmental commitment to safety.

“This ranking reinforces that the training our men receive is to a high standard, compared to the external market,” says Health and Safety Adviser Tony Carter.

“It also means that the Engineering Department can more easily subcontract to external clients, giving the work party professional experience in the trade.”

+IMPAC PREQUAL ranks businesses on a scale from one to five stars, with CMP in the top threshold of contractors assessed.

“Having a PREQUAL qualification is a big draw card for companies, as it highlights our commitment to health and safety,” says Engineering Instructor Chris Sigmund. “The majority of our external clients, including Downer, look for this when seeking contractors.”

It’s no small achievement. Principal Instructor Joe Sheasby and his team pulled together three evidence-based examples for almost 50 requests, putting the values of rangatira (demonstrating leadership and being accountable), wairua (being unified and focussed) and kaitiaki (being responsive and responsible) into action.

“It’s taken a lot of system and safety restructure over the last three years for us to achieve this rating including the creation of new in-house processes on how we do things inside the workshop and around sites," says Chris.

“The workshop staff and our men are continuously looking at ways to improve – which +IMPAC PREQUAL has helped us achieve.”

13 men are currently working towards a range of engineering qualifications, including certificates in welding, manufacturing, and a pre-trade certificate in working at heights.

“At the moment, we’re busy fabricating items for the Prison, other Corrections sites and external clients,” says Chris. “The men are always looking to improve on their skills through the qualifications we offer, or exposure to different projects - which will be easier to gain with our five-star +IMPAC PREQUAL qualification.”

“It’s exceptional for an industry within a prison to gain this rating,” says Tony. “The team should be incredibly proud.”

Construction underway for an industrial metal waste bin.