This is our Statement of Intent for 2018-2022. It tells Corrections’ story, outlining who we are and what we do, describes our current operating context, and explains how we will measure our success over the next four years. This is important so that we can demonstrate how our actions keep New Zealand’s communities safe.
Who we are and what we do
Corrections is responsible for the management of New Zealand’s corrections system, including the administration of custodial and community-based sentences and orders.
Our purpose is to improve public safety and contribute to the maintenance of a just society. In accordance with the Corrections Act 2004, we do this by:
* ensuring that custodial and community-based sentences and orders imposed by the Courts and the New Zealand Parole Board are administered in a safe, secure, humane and effective manner
* operating Corrections’ facilities in accordance with the Corrections Act 2004 and with consideration for other guidelines, such as the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners
* assisting in the rehabilitation of offenders and supporting their return to the community through the provision of programmes and other interventions
* providing information to the Courts and the New Zealand Parole Board to assist them in their decision-making.
We also notify victims of crime of information requirements as set out in the Victims’ Rights Act 2002. We support victims by referring them to organisations that can provide the specialist support they need.
The Justice Sector
Each agency in the justice sector is linked and Corrections’ work affects the work of others. This is why we work closely with our justice sector partners to make New Zealand safer and to deliver accessible justice services. The vision and strategic focus areas for the justice sector are set out in the Criminal Justice Sector Strategic Intent. Corrections’ priorities directly contribute to the sector as a whole.
The justice sector is made up of the following agencies:
* Ministry of Justice
* New Zealand Police
* Department of Corrections
* Crown Law Office
* Serious Fraud Office
* Oranga Tamariki - Ministry for Children.
About Corrections’ Statement of Intent 2018-2022
The two key strategic issues facing Corrections are the ongoing pressure on prison capacity due to growth in the prison population and significant over-representation of Māori in the corrections system, including through re-offending.
The prison population has grown rapidly since 2013, placing significant demand on our facilities, programmes and people. As this growth was largely unforeseen, Corrections’ ability to plan for it in advance was limited. At present, prisoner numbers continue to exceed forecast levels and we are implementing solutions to ease demand for prison places and increase prison capacity.
The actions we will take to address the population pressure faced by the corrections system are outlined later in this document. These are in line with the Minister of Corrections’ priorities, which include:
* reducing the prison population
* ensuring Corrections has appropriate infrastructure to accommodate the prison population and improve rehabilitation and reintegration
* contributing to a whole-of-government approach to transforming the criminal justice system
* maximising alternatives to prison, such as electronic monitoring and home detention.
The disproportionate re-offending rate among Māori was the focus of a Waitangi Tribunal inquiry between 2015 and 2017. The report, Tū Mai te Rangi!, found the Crown has a treaty responsibility to reduce inequities between Māori and non- Māori and made five recommendations to reduce Māori re-offending.
Māori men, women and young people are significantly over-represented in the corrections system and constitute the majority of people in the care or
management of Corrections. To meet our statutory responsibilities, to improve public safety and maintain a just society, we must succeed with and for Māori as an urgent priority. Improving outcomes for the single largest group of men, women and young people in our management and care is a central theme throughout this document.
This document is based on what we know right now. It does not cover strategic decisions that are yet to be made or long-term solutions to address the capacity- related challenges that are currently under consideration, nor does it reflect a refreshed strategic approach to succeeding for Māori. Many of these decisions are expected to be made in the near future.