V.02.Res.10 Protected persons visits
V.02.R10.01 Notification of contact restrictions
- On receipt of the completed V.01.Form.01.01 Private Visitor Application – Adult Visitor or V.01.Form.01.02 Private Visitor Application – Child Visitor and where the nominated visitor or in the case of a child under 18, the child’s guardian has identified that the prisoner has a contact restriction (see C.01.Res.05 Types of contact restrictions) in place, which may be either:
- a Protection order under the Domestic Violence Act 1995, or
- a Restraining order under the Oranga Tamariki Act 1989, or
- a Restraining order under the Harassment Act 1997, or
- a Non-contact order under the Victims’ Orders Against Violent Offenders Act 2014.
- a No contact condition (remand) under the Criminal Procedure Act 2011.
- Particular attention must be given to any application from a protected person to visit any prisoner to ensure the appropriateness of the visit's purpose and the safety of all persons involved. An IOMS alert must be added for each of the restriction types as they are relevant to the prisoner when the any staff member is advised or becomes aware that a prisoner is a respondent of a contact restriction.
- If the prison has been advised by a third party / external agency of the name, and/or, address of the protected person(s), the prison should request a copy of the contact restriction from the protected person (or for No Contact Conditions (NCC) - from the Court, and the information contained in the order or condition is to be used only for the purpose of:
- managing the offender’s sentence and any post sentence conditions
- protecting the protected person(s) by ensuring the restrictions applied by the Court is enforced.
- If in receipt of a copy of a the restriction, prison staff must check the exact conditions, to ensure the prison is taking all practicable steps to ensure the conditions are met (these restrictions may contain conditions specific to the prisoner):
- activate in IOMS an Alert and enter into comments the date received and name(s) of the protected person(s) (except for NCC - see I.06 Complete arrival administration)
- where special conditions exist these must be entered in Offender Notes in IOMS (Offender Homepage > Offender > Offender Notes > New / Edit > Protection / Restraining Orders), note the existence of the restrictions, its type and list the names and addresses (if known) of the “protected persons” and any conditions allowing specific forms of contact with the prisoner, i.e. written, verbal or physical contact. This information must not be made available to the prisoner as they may not know the current address of the “protected person”.
- for NCC once entered in IOMS Remand - No Contact Persons screen, an IOMS alert type "Remand No Contact Condition" will be created by IOMS automatically. The alert end date must be checked (and amended if required) to ensure it is the same as the next court date. Contact or address details of the specified person(s) must not be entered into any file notes or the IOMS alert - these must be entered into the IOMS - Remand - No Contact Persons screen only.
V.02.R10.02 Consent for visit between prisoner and adult protected person
- Prisoner respondents must not directly mail out a Visitor application form to potential visitors (unless there is evidence that the protected person has consented to contact).
- C.01.Res.05 Types of contact restrictions discusses how a prisoner may receive a visit, or other contact, from a protected person.
- If the prisoner declares that a contact restriction exists then the request will not be processed, unless contact is permitted, because doing so would amount to a breach of the contact restriction or condition.
- If contact is permitted, the prison will send out the appropriate application form to the protected person and will included the form C.01.Form.01 Confirmation by protected person of willingness to maintain contact so the protected person can confirm what type of contact they want to have (phone / mail / visit).
- If the prison director is satisfied visits between the prisoner and the protected person will not endanger the safety or welfare of any person, and that contact is permitted by the type of restriction, the prison director may approve the visit.
Prison directors cannot refuse to allow an adult to visit a prisoner solely because there is a contact restriction in place (unless that restriction is a NCC that does not contain any exemptions to allow visits).
If the prisoner is the respondent of a protection order and there is evidence that the protected person has consented to contact, in writing, then prison staff are able to send requests or forms, If the protected person has not already consented, in writing, the forms cannot be sent until and unless they do.
If the protected person requests and supplies a completed application form, then that form serves as written consent to contact. Staff must confirm whether that includes mail and phone contact - or only visit contact.
V.02.R10.03 Cancellation of visitor approval by prison director or protected person
- As with prisoners without contact restrictions the prison director may at any time deny approval for the protected person to visit the prisoner, regardless of consent, if they are satisfied continued visits will endanger the safety or welfare of any person.
If the visitor is already approved when staff become aware of a NCC, preventing visits, the visitor must be prohibited in IOMS - The V.01.Form.01.13 Visitor Prohibition Order must not be issued.
Prohibited is only used as the status of IOMS does not permit an approved visitor to be subsequently denied. As soon as the NCC no longer applies the prohibited status must be removed and the visitor can apply if they were not already approved, or becomes approved again it the were already approved.
- If the prison director is satisfied that continued visits by the protected person will endanger the safety or welfare of any person, they will issue a V.01.Form.01.13 Visitor Prohibition Order.
- See section V.01.07 Review of a denied application or an approval with conditions for process when visitor requests a review of a visit application decisions.
V.02.R10.04 Visits between a prisoner and people benefiting from a contact restriction who are minors
- No contact in the first instance.
- Even if conditions allowing contact apply no visits between any child of the applicant’s family covered by the contact restriction, and the prisoner will be permitted without the express written consent of the children’s guardian. Each child applicant must make an individual application as is required in V.01.Form.01.02 Private Visitor Application – Child Visitor.
- The prison director must request and receive a copy of the contact restriction before they consider the request for contact. This can be provided by either the Police or the applicant.
- Before allowing visits by children covered in the contact restriction, the prison director must be satisfied that the conditions of contact will not endanger the safety or welfare of the child or any other person.
- In any situation where a member of staff believes that a child or young person is at risk of serious danger then steps should be taken to bring these concerns to the attention of Oranga Tamariki. This applies whether or not there is a protection or restraining order in force. Refer to C.01.Res.06 Safeguarding children and young persons during contact for futher information.
Under a protection order, children of the applicant's family are automatically covered although they will not be named in the order.