Prison visit updates

Last updated: 22 May 2023

We know how important visits from friends and whānau/family are to people in prison and to supporting their rehabilitation and reintegration.

Like many other agencies and businesses, we are currently experiencing a number of staffing challenges, including an increase in COVID-19 and seasonal flu sickness. This impacts our ability to facilitate face-to-face visits safely.

Some prisons are facilitating visits with limited availability. Please contact the prison for more information around visiting times.

Visits will resume at sites when we are able to safely facilitate them.

COVID-19 testing, mask use, and vaccination

  • We encourage visitors with symptoms of COVID-19 to take a Rapid Antigen Test and return a negative result at home prior to visiting a prison.
  • Visitors are encouraged to wear masks during their visit, but they are not required.
  • COVID-19 vaccination is not required for people visiting prison but we encourage all visitors to be vaccinated and boosted.

Visit status by site

Site
Visit status
Northern Region
Northland Region Corrections Facility
Open - limited availability.
Auckland Prison

Face-to-face visits have resumed in some units.

At this time, face-to-face visits are open in Unit 6 on Monday mornings, and in Unit 8 on Thursdays in the early afternoon.

Virtual visits continue to be available for other units, and visitors will be prioritised for the next available slot when booking.

Mt Eden Corrections Facility
Face-to-face visits will resume with limited availability from Tuesday 23 May. Video calls available.
Auckland Region Women's Corrections Facility
Open - limited availability
Auckland South Corrections Facility
Open
Central Region
Spring Hill Corrections Facility
Face-to-face visits have resumed with limited availability in the Special Treatment Unit (STU). Video calls available for all units.
Waikeria Prison
Open
Tongariro Prison
Open - limited availability.
Lower North Region
Whanganui Prison
Open – limited availability.
Hawke's Bay Regional Prison
Open – limited availability.
Manawatū Prison
Open – limited availability.
Rimutaka Prison
Face-to-face visits paused. Video calls available.
Arohata Prison
Open - limited availability.
Southern Region
Christchurch Men's Prison
Open
Christchurch Women's Prison
Open
Rolleston Prison
Open
Otago Corrections Facility
Open
Invercargill Prison
Open

While we do our best to ensure planned visits go ahead, there may be times where visits need to be cancelled at short notice, or when we need to restrict visits in the event of an outbreak. We will try to give advance notice to visitors where possible if this occurs.

Not all prisons will be ready to resume visits at the same time, depending on levels of COVID-19 at different sites, and staffing available.

The safety and wellbeing of our staff, the community, and people in prison is our highest priority, and visits will resume in individual prisons when they can be safely undertaken.

Video calling will continue to be used, particularly where face-to-face visits remain paused.