Corrections Minister Louise Upston has officially opened a new Hamilton Community Corrections site that is safer for staff and will help better with the rehabilitation of offenders.
The Hamilton site is the second centre to be completed this year, as part of a five-year nationwide programme to make Community Corrections sites more secure for both staff and offenders. A new Community Corrections site was opened last month in Hawera.
“Many offenders in our communities need support to make positive changes in their lives and we need to make this assistance as accessible as possible,” Ms Upston says.
The Hamilton site, which amalgamated six existing sites, gives streamlined services to offenders including education, work and living skills training, mental health care, drug and alcohol treatment, and on-site trade training facilities.
“The site has been set up to meet the rehabilitative needs of offenders and make it easier for them to meet the statutory requirements of their sentences,” Ms Upston says.
The on-site trade training facilities, which are the first of their kind for Corrections, will enable offenders to complete qualifications in areas where there are skill shortages locally.
Ms Upston says staff will benefit from improved security features including an anti-climb counter, better lines of sight and closed-circuit camera surveillance. More than 170 staff are empoyed at the site and help manage around 3000 community-based sentences and orders including home detention and community work.