The New South Wales Opposition says rehabilitation in the state's prisons is in disarray.
But the states prisons could never rehabilitate in the first place. So how can it be in disarray? The space station as it is known cannot rehabilitate because it's only a dot on the community map, as it were, in relation to how people were raised.
The space station can take people away and house them in a compartment, in isolation even, so that they don't hurt anyone else, or solitary confinement so they can hurt themselves. By its nature, the station can sustain people under candlelight. By its nature, the station provides a very good income for thousands of people from Judges to welfare workers and even art teachers.
Fodder for the victim industry
Police, prison guards psychiatric specialists doctors and nurses who by their nature respect their job - because they need to provide an income and will encourage prestige into their life - for a reward - granted by the government - who has ample carrots to throw at their commitment towards governments ideals - whether they be politically motivated or legislatively motivated.
By its nature those people cast a net to catch offenders because that is their job. At the end of the day one must cast a wide net in order to catch offenders. In other words your crime will look so much bigger than it was and more charges will be laid than you ever thought there could be, and more punishment will be served for what you have done.
In short people will be pissed mate by the time they have finished with them. And let me tell you, people will be dissatisfied with how they were treated, because their crime will not reflect the outcome and the trauma inflicted on them, in terms of the punishment imposed on them in jail, or out-side jail, like periodic detention or community service.
A sex offender, we will call him John, Sex Offender! Come at me to write his story! Sure I write stories for anyone disaffected by the system. Tell me your story John? He tells me his story during a visit at Justice Action. I listen and I take notes.
He goes away and rings me the next day. I tell him I have a problem with his account of what happened. He tells me that he went to help his sister and was charged with sexually assaulting his sister's daughter, because his sister had a problem with a violent partner. John said that he was innocent and only wanted to help.
John said he put his hand up on a plea bargain for a lessor sentence. Fine but is it? He said he was innocent. I said I thought about what you have said John and the trouble I have is that I could never put my hand up and plea bargain in front of my sister or my niece because they would think I did it.
The problem is that John is pissed because he was sentenced for the same crime in two States, the ACT and NSW. The ACT told NSW he was a sentenced sex offender even though he was facing the same charges in the other State, that were committed at the same time, but on different days.
John had to travel away from his home to serve periodic detention because the ACT did not have NSW facilities, so that he could serve his ACT time, and he had to travel to NSW, and as he put it, feels mistreated by authorities, in terms of what he said was a minor sexual assault.
I said John you have pleaded guilty to an offence and because you have pleaded guilty to an offence you have allowed the authorities to exploit you, make it worse, miss-treat you, and now you have a choice. But, but he said. I said no butt's about it, the system is like a domino effect. Once you start the ball rolling it collects dust and there is lots of dust in the Department of Corrective Services. I said, John, what time have you left to serve now? John said none.
Then why don't you get on with your life?
John sitting with his teenage son. Look at your son he needs you to be supportive and happy. John said, "Because they did it, all of it, and now I am traumatised."
But you invited them to do it when you pleaded guilty to the crime. John, but?
I wanted him to take responsibility so that he did not do it again. Even though he was treated badly. Not badly but with what the system could offer in terms of the logistical facts about space stations and their ability to virtually sustain human standards. Virtually no matter how many resources are put into a prison, the outcome is clear, someone didn't come to work and you stay in your cell all day.
But, but. No butt's about it. Someone bashed me. No butt's about it. Someone rapped me. No butt's about it. Someone put me in segregation. No butt's about it. Someone said I told another prisoner I killed someone. No butt's about it. Someone said I owned up to other crimes. No butt's about it. Someone said I will strike again. No butt's about it. Someone said I have to serve twice as much time because my crime was committed over two States. No butt's about it.
John, in Australia today you have no defence unless you're Kerry Packer.. Watchdogs are Lapdogs and if it's reckless or its noble cause corruption, you die.
If you're in your cell and you push the button like Rene Rivkin and nobody comes you may die. 000's not 10 minutes away its two hours away. Heart attack? You die. Each State must have its revenge.
Each State must have its exploits, because judges do it as well. And they need to be seen to giving people a sentence, regardless of what other states will do, for their own collective group of politicians and voters.
Now John this is your claim to fame. Don't stuff it up! If the States want to see that the extra punishment does not work, because you're pissed now, then they may re think again, about the trauma imposed on top of the sentence you served, twice. Or they may maintain their claim to earn a living and respond to the group of citizens in their particular State, regardless of the facts.
That is why it is important not to have a person serve time for what they have not done.
Because the system is a space station full of creatures that need to be fed. A place that is only a micro level of community resources and in terms of the difficulties imposed by maintaining human standards, with the restrictions imposed on the people who run the station, because of security and community standards.
The Parole Board's annual report has revealed the number of prisoners released on parole last year almost matches the figure for people who were sent back to jail.
The Opposition's justice spokesman, Andrew Humpherson, says the state's prisoner rehabilitation system is not working.
"[Premier] Bob Carr needs to seriously take charge of rehabilitation of prisoners in our system so when they get released they aren't committing crimes," he said.
"They are not a threat to the community and they are not costing the community more in terms of continuing on as criminals and inmates in the prison system."
By Gregory Kable Justice Action 26 June 03
THE DUCK: Quack!!
SENTENCING RIVKIN: BRAIN SURGERY OR SUICIDE?
A proper Sentencing Council, such as the one proposed by the Carr Government, would not have sent Rene Rivkin to jail, locked up as a slave in a box.
RESPONSE TO REVIEW OF INSPECTOR GENERAL OF PRISONS
Justice Action calls for the retention of the office of Inspector General and a restructure of the legislation making it truly independent.
Rene Rivkin: Beam me down Scottie! - We gotta get out of this space At best a prison is only a Space Station. Nothing more nothing less and it doesn't matter how much money or resources are spent on prisons they're only a candle light for human growth and survival, opposed to the sunshine and the benefit and resources of the whole community.
Old bureaucrats to say whether they felt there should be an effective inspector of bureaucrats?
JA is urgently working on a response to the 31 page review of the position of the Inspector General of Corrective Services position released by the Minister on10/6/03.
High Risk Management Unit (HRMU) INSPECTION
This letter is to request permission for an independent inspection team to examine the 75-cell HRMU at Goulburn Jail. The proposed inspection team consists of specialist doctors, jurists, members of the Corrections Health Service Consumer Council and prisoners representatives.
MJA - BBCD Outbreaks in NSW prisons
Seems some of our friends in & around Corrections Health Service (CHS) were able to take advantage of a couple of recognised cases of needle sharing by HIV positive prisoners to gather data for a study.
As an ex-Grafton intractable (1971-1975) and the only living ex-prisoner to have served the longest time inside Katingal (1975-1978) I feel qualified to offer the following personal observations:
Intolerable Conditions of Prisoners at Goulburn's HRMU
We wish to with respect, level a serious complaint against the Chief Executive Officer, Corrections Health Services, Dr Richard Matthews.
SIX YEARS IN HELL - The Sorry Saga of Ivan Robert Milat
This month, May 2003, Ivan Milat will have spent six years in segregation/isolation without any charges, enquiry, or breach of prison rules levelled against him.
NSW death in custody, false imprisonment, and assault
Knight's case sparked headlines after it emerged that his suicide in John Moroney Correctional Centre [prison] in Sydney on January 22 occurred 18 days after his official release date.
Victorian (Australia) Juvenile Deaths in Custody & Post-Release has just been published on the British Journal of Medicine Quotes (BJM): "The risk of death was nine times higher in male offenders than in the reference Victorian male population. Although the estimate is unstable because of the small number of deaths, female offenders seemed to be about 40 times more likely to die than the reference Victorian female population."
The Criminal Law (Rehabilitation of Offenders) Act 1986 Qld
The Criminal Law (Rehabilitation of Offenders) Act 1986 (Qld), requires that any person who has committed an offence which is less than 10 years old or which resulted in a prison sentence of more than 30 months, must disclose that offence if requested eg. for employment purposes. If a criminal record is disclosed in a job application, it is unlikely that person will be given the job.
NSW Serious Offenders Review Council
In response to a letter we have received from Mr K C who has said that he is serving 24 years and 10 months commencing on 29/8/1991 with his earliest release date being 28/6/2016 with 4 years parole and full time 28/6/2020. He said that he contacted the Serious Offenders Review Council in writing but received no response.
Justice Action's complaints about ACM to the NSW Ombudsman fell on deaf ears The Federal Government is reviewing allegations that the company it pays to run Australia's detention centres the same company who runs Junee Jail in NSW has fraudulently reduced staffing levels in at least one centre to increase its profits.
Token Parole Board reforms silent on Govt bungle
The Carr governments token reforms of the Parole Board are minimalist and still fail to explain the election cover-up of mismanagement, which contributed to an inmate's [a prisoners] death.
PAROLE BOARD REWARDED? FOR DEADLY MISTAKE
The Justice Minister has released government reforms to the Parole Board following the death of an aboriginal inmate, which was due to a Parole Board error.
Sentencing innovation breaks vicious circle of jail terms
"Three months' jail for one punch in a pub fight is too much," said the victim. The victim's comment counted because he and the offender, Robert Bolt, a Nowra Aborigine, were making history in the first case of circle sentencing, a new way of deciding punishment for indigenous offenders.
Letter from the mother of a prisoner on remand at the High Risk Management Unit Goulburn Correctional Centre I am writing to give you permission to make any inquiries on my behalf as I am invalid pensioner who doesn't drive and been only well enough to travel by train once in 15 months to see my son Scott Simpson. I have enclosed a copy of Scott's letter and also a copy of gaol papers form I have to fill out and wait to see if I'm allowed in to see him. He doesn't get any visits. He is in the Supermax and deprived of any privileges not even legal Aid will fund a solicitor to see him in Goulburn.
WA Jail trade in 'sex for favours'
THE West Australian Government has ordered an inquiry into claims guards at Perth's main women's prison are trading favours for sex, and encouraging inmates to form lesbian relationships.
NSW prisons over-crowded. Gov't orders investigation into death in custody
In January this year, a 23-year-old Aboriginal prisoner was found hanging in his cell in a Sydney jail 18 days after he was due to be released.
Yes Minister: 'Justice Action meets John Hatzistergos Justice Mininster' We have taken a few days to pass this on, as we wanted clarification of the minister's statement about the purposes of imprisonment before publishing it.
Beyond Bars Alliance colleagues
There are certainly problems with the IG's terms of reference and the position is not nearly as strong as it should or could be but it should not be lost it should be strengthened (along the lines of the UK IG of Prisons) to provide an independent voice to the Parliament regarding activities and processes that otherwise happen behind prison walls.
Submissions for Review of Inspector General
There is a very serious attack happening on the office of the NSW Inspector General of Corrective Services. A secret and flawed review is taking place at this moment, and we call upon all individuals and organisations interested in the area to make their views known.
Two thirds of a billion dollars and DCS can't work out what authority they have? "Two thirds of a billion dollars of taxpayers money and the Department of Corrective Services can't work out what authority they have to hold the people who are in jail."
Australia: Private Prisons, Junee NSW
When I got to Junee I was given nothing except bed linen. That's it! No clothing. I had to put my name down for clothing, which they said I could get on Saturday. When I went down to get my clothing on Saturday I was told they had nothing but I was told that I could buy what I wanted on their monthly buy-up. In the mean time I got rashes between my legs from the dirty clothes I had on.
Justice Action meets with new Minister for Justice
John Hatzistergos Minister for Justice is meeting with Brett Collins and Justice Action today at 11:30 a.m.
ARUNTA PHONE SYSTEM: IDC Lithgow Prison
The prisoners of Lithgow Correctional Centre have requested that the Lithgow Inmate Development Committee write to you on their behalf and ask that the phone systems heavy burden upon the prisoners at this institution and their families be reviewed. I will outline the problems.
Health problems denied in prison
Lithgow Correctional Centre (IDC) Inmate Development Committee "Currently there are 72 inmates on the doctors waiting list with only one doctor coming fortnightly and usually on a weekend".
'Old guard dog' dig in heels on NSW Govt front bench - The rolling of the filthy heads... The New South Wales Premier is yet to convince at least one of his long-standing ministers to stand aside to make way for new blood on the front bench.
NSW Prisons Inmate Development Committee speaks out
I am writing on behalf of the IDC Inmate Development Committee in area 3, MSPC at Long Bay. Area 3 is where, the Department is congregating minimum-security offenders within maximum-security walls whilst awaiting mandatory programs at Cubit (Sex Offenders Program).
THE GULAG TREATMENT - The Trauma Of Court Appearances When Incarcerated Prisoner transport vehicle 10th January 2003 It's about 4.40am, very darkoutside and although I'm expecting it, it is still intrusive when my dreams are interrupted by the sound of my name, it is the officer checking that I'm awake ready to face the long day ahead.
Sir David Longland Correctional Centre
If it were possible to characterize the term B Block attitude in a modern dictionary, it would read something like "demeanor of inhabitance" or "state of mind or behaviour of occupants".
SIR DAVID LONGLAND CORRECTIONAL CENTRE QLD - CELLS IN B BLOCK The cells in B Block are like no other in any Queensland prison. After Mr. Cooper was severally embarrassed by the Abbott and Co escape on 4th November 1997, he visited B Block and the surrounding grounds. It was that visit, by Cooper, that set in motion a plan (up the ante) to make sure security in B Block would never embarrass him again. It was like closing the gate after the horse has bolted.
Inspector General Ignored On Womens Prison
Four months after a report from the Inspector General on Mulawa Correctional Centre, key recommendations involving safety and welfare of prisoners and staff have been ignored. Kathryn Armstrong (former chair of Inmate Development Committee) and Annabel Walsh, released from Mulawa Womens Prison in February, have produced an independent report confirming the findings of the Inspector General.
Distribution of: 'How to Votes in prisons'?
Justice Action have received information from Andrew Burke of the NSW Greens that they have enquired with the Department of Corrective Services as to the procedure for distributing their How To Votes in prisons in the period before the election.
Getting Justice Wrong DPP make full admissions
Back in May 2001 Nicholas Cowdery QC made an error at law by giving a speech called Getting Justice Wrong at the University of New England, Armidale Thursday, 31 May 2001. Sir Frank Kitto, Lecture now published at the DPP website. At page six, paragraph 3 under the heading:
NSW ELECTION 2003: VOTE 1 GREENS
Inspector-General: The Greens believe that the role of the Inspector-General is crucial to the proper functioning of the prison system. It has never been more important to have a powerful watchdog role than today. Section 3.11 of our Criminal Justice Policy commits the Greens to "strengthening the role of the Inspector-General of Prisons."
Long Bay Prison: The latest inside story
Private food purchases called Buy-Ups that normally take care of the prisoners additional food nutrition in Jail has been changed.
Doing time even harder: 146 prisoners far from home
The United States, however, has detained without trial about 650 men from 43 countries. They include Australians David Hicks and Mamdouh Habib, who are held at the Guantanamo Bay naval base as part of the sweep against global terrorism [scapegoats for the Coalition of the Killing's, pre-emptive strikes, occupation and genocide for resources in the Middle East.]
Human Rights 'Framed'
Here is a quick report on our Human Rights Commission approach on Framed (the quarterly magazine of Justice Action) being banned from all NSW prisons. After 42 issues went in.
Prison Privatisation: Death camps looming in NSW
I asked for the identification of the person I was speaking to and was told that I was not entitled to that information. I needed to verify the call and asked for a name or number to register my call because I was asked to get those details by my coordinator.The person refused to identify themselves either by name or number. I asked to be transferred to a senior person and was refused. The person I spoke to then hung up the phone.
Justice Action criticises Govt's victim voice policy
Victims are not being properly considered in compensation and no expression is given to them, of community goodwill. A spokesperson for Justice Action Mr Brett Collins said, "No community expression or concern is given to the victims of crime. They feel their pain is not acknowledged by the government which tries to balance pain against pain. Never! The community is being misled."
NSW education professor warns further commitment needed
The author of a report on the New South Wales education system has urged the major political parties to do more for education in the election campaign.
Coalition proposes to exploit children
The Coalition says it would reform juvenile justice in New South Wales to require the courts to "get tough" on juvenile crime.
Corrections Victoria and criminal acts: SCS-4\320 UPDATE
You have stated "Section 30 of the Corrections Act 1986 and the Information Privacy Act 2000, restricts the release of confidential information regarding prisoners, I therefore am unable to provide any information regarding this matter."
Death camps looming in Victoria
A letter was received on 15 January 03 from SCS-4\320 a remand prisoner in Victoria's Barwon Prison I later found out that the prisoner was in the Acacia High Security Unit.
Jail search finds knives, syringes
Mr Brett Collins a spokesperson for Justice Action said, "It shows there is a lot of desperation in the prison system at the moment and has been for some time."
Take crime talk beyond the bars:'lobby group'
A coalition of academics, crime experts, welfare and church groups is preparing to launch an intensive pre-election campaign aimed at refocusing the attention of NSW politicians from harsh sentencing reforms to crime prevention strategies.
Six weeks, six months, six years: inmates have little chance of making fresh start More than 15,500 people are released from NSW prisons each year, twice the number of 20 years ago. But new research shows many ex-prisoners find it impossible to reintegrate into society and, months after release, are worse off than before they went to jail.
Fiona Stanley, the children's crusader
It is all about prevention. As Fiona Stanley sees it, with one in five Australian teenagers experiencing significant mental health problems, there are just not enough treatment services to cope with the demand.
Attempted thong theft costs $560
A man has been fined $500 after appearing in a northern New South Wales court charged with stealing a pair of thongs.
NSW A-G moves to stop criminals and ex-criminals selling stories
From next month criminals or ex-criminals who try to profit (earn a living for paid work, like writing a book etc..) from their crimes in New South Wales will have the proceeds confiscated.
NSW Govt criticised over criminal justice record
Key criminal justice groups have described the New South Wales Government's record on justice issues as a "disappointing performance".
APPOINTMENT OF KLOK IS: 'DECLARATION OF WAR'
The decision of the Carr government to appoint John Jacob Klok as the new Assistant Commissioner for Corrective Services in charge of security represents a statement of contempt to all those concerned about law and justice in NSW.
How NSW Dept of Corrective Services spent $800,000 dollars to rehabilitate a Sydney man sentenced to life for second murder! A spokesperson for Justice Action Mr Pro Grams said, "Well it's your money, how would you like it spent? And what do you think about rehabilitation on behalf of the Department of Corruptive Services?
Prisoners Representatives Excommunicated
Ron Woodham, Commissioner Corrective Services stated "[this Department] does not recognise Justice Action as an advocate on correctional centre issues." He has ordered a ban on all Justice Action material inside the NSW prison system. This resulted from a request for the approval of the latest edition of Framed (the Magazine of Justice Action) to be distributed throughout NSW prisons as has occurred for the past ten years.
Academic devises scheme for low income earners to pay back fines:
A professor at the Australian National University [another one of John Howard's hand picked losers like Peter Saunders the social services head-kicker has come up with a scheme which could see low income earners pay back criminal fines over a period of time.
Dept of Corrective Services: Rotten Ron Woodham on the ropes
This is The Freeedom Of Speech and The Press in a goldfish-bowl! Herr Goebells has spoken. Zieg Heil! (Which means, actually: "aim-for health!" incidentally)Apologies for not making meetings ... my first experiences with Woodham (then a -screw-gestapo-minor-with-a-friendly-dog - AND YOU KNOW WHAT IT MEANS WHEN EVEN HIS DOG DOESN`T LIKE HIM?)
At the Minister's Pleasure The case of Michael Kelly
Michael is caught up in a particularly cruel version of the game of Cat and Mouse. Because he is classified as a forensic patient under the Mental Heath Act of NSW, the Minister for Health is his master, not the Minister for Corrective Services. And the Minister for health will not let him go.
EX-PRISONER UNEMPLOYMENT: SENTENCED FOR LIFE
Name removed by request served time in prison decades ago. Shes still being punished today. According to commonwealth and state legislation, ex-prisoners applying for jobs must declare any conviction that fits into the following categories: less than 10 years old, more than 10 years old but served more than 30 months in prison.
ARE YOU INNOCENT?
The Australian Law Reform Commission had recommended that the Innocence Panel be independent and have the power to investigate alleged miscarriages of justice.
RESTORING TRUE JUSTICE:
Australian prisons are fast becoming the new asylums of the third millennium. The prison industry is booming, while Australia spends far less on mental health services than similar countries.
NSW Department of Corrective Services attack right to privacy
Corrective Services Minister Richard Amery has a problem attacking prisoners right to privacy.It seems to us that a civil society is best served when social justice laws are applied to all people regardless of their circumstances. Once government starts making exceptions which disadvantage certain groups and individuals, such laws are meaningless.
Litigants are drowning: in the High Court
There were so many self represented litigants appearing in the High Court that more than half of its registry staff's time was taken up in dealing with them. The "go it alone" litigants have to take on tasks well above their qualified league causing them stress. This growing problem cannot be left unchecked.
Everyone wants to get out of 'jail' but 'Framed' wants life: Rotten Ron on the ropes On 2 May 2002, Justice Action received a faxed letter from Manager of DCS Operations Support Branch saying that, in his view, articles in Framed edition #42 'lack balance and integrity' and he is therefore 'not prepared to recommend this issue of Framed for placement in to correctional centre libraries.' Prisoners and those concerned about prisoner issues have very few sources of information.
Methadone addicts formed within: 'NSW Prisons'
The New South Wales Opposition has accused the State Government of turning jailed heroin users into Methadone addicts.
Murder charge first for DNA data bank link, but not the same as solving the murder Mass DNA testing of prisoners has [allegedly] led to the first NSW case of a person being charged with a previously unsolved murder as a result of a controversial gene-matching data bank.
Medical Records: Alex Mitchell's lost world
Perhaps we can get your medical report and spew it around publicly so you can see how it feels. But surely we do not have to go that far. And of course we are law-abiding citizens and I should think it would be enough to remind you of your ethics to report at all.
Prisoners can prove innocence for $20?
Les Kennedy Daily Telegraph reported today that" Prisoners who believe that DNA will prove they were wrongly convicted will have the chance to prove their innocence for a mere $20 administration fee. The move comes 20 months after NSW inmates were asked to provide DNA for comparison with a databank of DNA from unsolved crime scenes for possible convictions.
NSW opposition pledges review of detention laws
A spokesperson for Justice Action Ms Anal Advice said " NSW Prisons are a sex offence if you have been raped, bashed and squatted down to be strip searched. People should be diverted from going there at all material times".
Civil libertarians condemn planned changes to prisoners' privacy rights The New South Wales Government is using a recent case involving [framed] serial killer Ivan Milat to justify its decision to remove the privacy rights of prisoners. But really just another attack on Ivan Milat from Parliament House.
The punishment: Is the 'crime'
The punishment is the crime according to retired chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia Justice Alistair Nicholson. "Smacking a child ought to be seen as assault".
Mr. & Mrs. Mandatory Sentencing
Well congratulations to the bride and groom. Could you please be upstanding and raise your glasses for Mr. And Mrs. Mandatory.
Just wipe your arse on Ivan again Minister?
Mr Amery Minister for Corrective services has a problem with finding a toilet roll to wipe his bottom. Justice Action is appalled at the attacks by Amery and others in parliament on Ivan Milat's right to privacy and their attacks on the Privacy Commissioner and his office.
NSW Parliament Bitter Pills To Swallow?
One delusion pill: So people who investigate their own mistakes make sure there was no mistake or someone else made the mistake. Perhaps you're not biased and you will be honest about it.
NSW prisons - primary industry bailed up!
In many quiet regional centres around NSW there is a new primary industry shaping up. It has something to do with Bail but not with bales. The minister for Agriculture Richard Amery who also has the prisons portfolio is now committed to farming prisoners.
The Separation of Powers Doctrine is nowcontaminated witharangeofcolours, now leaving us with a black shirt on a once blue bridge that crossed that thin blue line. The 'Amery and Woodham show'.
Prison Mind Games-Do they exist?
Directives are given inside the prison system that are not consistent with the law in NSW. And not in the good interests of the health and well being of the prisoners.
The Government is likely to abolish the Inspector General of Corrective Services position The Mulawa inspection report recommendations below strictly illustrate how important he is.
Chronology - A History of Australian Prisons
[Allegedly:] The events that have shaped NSW prisons - from convict days through royal commissions, to the Supermax of today. [I say allegedly because no one should trust Four Corners [Walls], why? Because they spill out the propaganda of the day for the Government, whether it be wrong or right. A government that lies and has no remorse about it.]
Govt, police 'let off the hook' Haneef inquiry
8 years ago