Staff service on Pitcairn Island recognised

SCO Donald Windybank concreting the Alternative Harbour. The work of seven Corrections staff, who have returned from an overseas deployment to remote Pitcairn Island, was recognised recently.

Six of the seven were presented with a Pacific Pin by Corrections Minister Hon. Louise Upston and a commemorative coin by British High Commissioner Jonathan Sinclair.

Corrections provided custodial services at Her Majesty’s Prison (HMP) Pitcairn, on the remote British territory in the Pacific Ocean, for 10 months in 2016/17.

Corrections staff were first deployed to Pitcairn Island from 2006 to 2009 to monitor six offenders found guilty of sexually abusing children. The British Government requested a second deployment to provide custodial supervision for an additional 10 months in 2016/17.

“It’s a big ask to bring together a team to work in such an isolated place,” says National Commissioner Rachel Leota.

During their time on Pitcairn Island, the corrections officers also helped with community projects such as concreting the Alternative Harbour. The harbour was built to provide a second way of getting supplies and people on and off the island when Bounty Bay Harbour is unavailable due to high seas. There is no air service on Pitcairn Island due to its remoteness.

“In addition to their duties and the harbour work, the team took on other community projects in their free time to enrich the lives of all those living on the island,” says Rachel.

At the ceremony in Parliament from left to right:  Team Leader and HMP Pitcairn Superintendent Craig Sweeny (Whanganui Prison), Prison officers HMP Pitcairn:  David Jones (Auckland Prison), Greg Hall (Otago Corrections Facility), Simon Namana (Northland Region Corrections Facility), Donald Windybank (Northland Region Corrections Facility), and Jason King (Tongariro Prison).  Absent: Kevin Martin (Whanganui Prison). Kevin will receive his pin at a separate event.