The team at Rotorua Community Corrections are focused on supporting people and their whānau through their home detention sentences.
People can often become overwhelmed with home detention restrictions and breach their sentence. Home detention can be tough on the person’s mental health and relationships with their whānau.
Home detention provides an opportunity to work differently because probation officers are regularly in people's homes, working with them and their whānau.
Incorporating Hōkai Rangi, our strategy to deliver better outcomes with and for Māori in our management and their whānau, into our home detention practice, means we consider what’s the best approach for this person at this time. Can we verify, monitor and manage any risk as a result of this decision?
Last month staff were managing a man on home detention and his father was dying of cancer in Auckland. With manager approval the team organised extended absences to travel to Auckland to spend time with his father.
In another example, staff were working with a person who was struggling with their mental health. Staff talked to his whānau and on top of his regular absences he was allowed to attend his daughter’s cross country with whānau members.
The team also changed a person’s home detention address temporarily for one week to allow them to attend their father’s funeral and stay with whānau – going the extra mile to assist with someone’s wellbeing.
Working this way encourages compliance and helps staff build relationships with whānau.
Staff say it’s also a natural approach to involve whānau in our decision making.
Hōkai Rangi gives us permission to operate differently and do what we can to assist with a person’s wellbeing.