Section B: Organisational Arrangements

7. Management Structure for New Zealand

The Chief Executive of the Department of Corrections has established the Inmate Employment Advisory Committee as an advisory body for the implementation of Inmate Employment Policy. The purpose of the Committee is to advise the Chief Executive on the establishment and achievement of the:

  • strategic direction for all inmate employment
  • operational targets and financial performance requirements
  • identification and management of risk of the Department of Corrections' industries, land-based and other employment activities.

The primary accountability of the Committee is to the Chief Executive, who selects the Chair and membership of the Committee. The Chief Executive will periodically review both.

The members of the Committee will be:

Non Departmental Members

A Chair and between five and seven members, who have some expertise relevant to the Committee in discharging its role, or represent pertinent interests.

Departmental Members

Chief Financial Officer
General Manager, Public Prisons Service (or nominee)
Manager, Corrland Inmate Employment.

8. Application of the Inmate Employment Policy to Privately Managed Prisons

The Department has let a management contract for the Auckland Central Remand Prison to a private provider. The Superintendent of a privately managed prison has the power to require inmates to work under Section 20 of the Penal Institutions Act 1954. However, privately managed prisons must comply with the Inmate Employment Policy. The effect of this is that a Superintendent of a privately managed prison can only require inmates to carry out work that is directly connected to the maintenance and running of the prison itself. Any work outside that category must be voluntarily undertaken by the inmate, and any refusal will not incur a penalty (other than loss of income that would have otherwise been gained from the employment itself).

9. Integrated Offender Management: Work Experience as Part of Sentence Management

Integrated Offender Management will provide a framework to assess the needs of offenders.

Within Integrated Offender Management key components are Sentence Management and Sentence Planning. Sentence Management, within prisons, is the process of actively managing individual inmates in order to achieve the best possible outcome and balance with respect to ensuring safe, secure and humane containment, reducing re-offending and optimising inmate employment. Sentence Planning is the process where individualised plans for inmates are developed for the purpose of effective sentence management.

All inmates will have a sentence plan. This plan will assess the inmate's risk, needs and responsivity.

It will include the following elements:

  • the need for programmes such as Drug and Alcohol Treatment or Violence Prevention
  • assessment of literacy and numeracy needs - the National Certificate of Employment Skills can provide both vocational training and basic literacy
  • work skills and experience and deficits in this area
  • reintegration issues to be addressed in order to successfully settle the inmate back into the community. This may for example include assistance to find post-release work.

In future, inmates, other than remand and short sentence inmates, will be assessed for employment using an Inmate Employment Assessment tool. From this assessment, a profile of each inmate will be developed which will outline education, literacy and numeracy levels, work habits, employment skills and future employment direction. This will, of course, be balanced by their Identified Drug User status and security rating. Based on this profile, suitable employment opportunities will be identified and the inmate scheduled to Inmate Employment.

The current target of Inmate Employment is to provide each eligible inmate with six hours of work five days a week. This target is to be achieved by 2006. It is expected that rehabilitative programmes and other constructive activity will normally be delivered outside the work period of eligible inmates.

Wherever possible within sentence management, complementary work and programme times should be designed. Prisons will need to take a flexible approach when designing sentence management so that both work and other important rehabilitation and reintegration needs are addressed. As a rule, the workday should not be interrupted, but the availability and needs of other programmes will also have to be taken into account.

Based on inmate need, a number of programmes might best be delivered in a comprehensive manner at particular points in the sentence. Where this is applied, the inmate's time would be dedicated to the programme rather than to employment training.