Introduction from the Chief Executive

This is my first year as Chief Executive of Corrections, and therefore my first Statement of Intent. This document sets out Corrections’ aspirations and the actions we will lead to reduce re-offending and improve public safety. It sets out our plans to create lasting change.

Every day of the working week more than 8000 Corrections staff get up and go to work with New Zealand’s most difficult and challenging citizens in both institutional and  community-based settings.

Corrections staff work in an environment of high risk and high reward. They feel the enormity of the responsibility they carry for playing their part in keeping New Zealand safe. That is why we put such a high priority on making sure we are always thinking about and responding to the risks we see in the offenders we manage.

Guarding public safety is our bottom line and we are always seeking to improve our performance in doing this by reducing risk and minimising error. At the same time we stretch for our top line of reducing re-offending, where we get the opportunity to turn lives around for good.

To do our job well we must be disciplined in our planning, courageous in our decision making and passionate about creating lasting change in peoples’ lives. We have a unique insight into the offenders we manage and the patterns of behaviour that require changes in order to create offending-free futures.

When the going gets tough we don’t give up, we create new solutions, always ensuring that offenders remain accountable for their actions and the safety of communities is put first.

Today the Department of Corrections is a well performing organisation – a position it has worked diligently to achieve. This platform has allowed us to get clear about our future priorities and the expectations we must meet to be successful for all New Zealanders.

My challenge to Corrections staff is to take every opportunity to lead the effort to reduce re-offending and improve public safety, in a way that also improves value for money. It’s a lofty challenge, but I’m confident that we can do it.

Ray Smith
Chief Executive