Date: Mon, 26 May 97 16:00:21 CDT
From: rich@pencil (Rich Winkel)
Subject: Prison Privatisation Report Int'l - May 97
/** justice.usa: 202.0 **/
** Topic: Prison Privatisation Report Int'l - May 97 (25K) **
** Written 6:29 AM May 25, 1997 by mphillips in cdp:justice.usa **
From: "Margaret B. Phillips" <email@example.com>
/* Written 8:45 PM May 23, 1997 by firstname.lastname@example.org in igc:justice.prison */
From: Prison Activist List <email@example.com>
Original Date: Thu, 22 May 1997 15:59:10 -0700 (PDT)
Siege at women's prison
From Prison Privatisation Report International
22 May 1997
Eight prisoners armed with planks of wood threatened to riot during a siege
at the CCA-run Metropolitan Women's Prison in Melbourne, Victoria on 28
April 1997. The siege followed an incident in which another prisoner was
handcuffed for allegedly trying to assault a member of staff. The state's
Special Emergency Services Group was called in to help negotiate a peaceful
end to the confrontation. The company is holding an investigation into the siege and the prisoners'
concerns which caused it.
The Australian Capital Territory's deliberations on setting up its own
prison to avoid sending prisoners to New South Wales continues. A recently
issued discussion document, Establishment of a Correctional Facility
assesses the pros and cons of privatisation. While it states that "those
who visit private facilities are likely to be impressed by their smooth and
professional operation... more research is required to make meaningful
comparisons between private and public sector institutions using objective performance measures."
The report adds that "unfortunately, such research is sometimes hampered by
restrictions arising from commercial in confidence... and that... available
evidence does not support the conclusion that the private sector provides
correctional services at a significantly lower cost to the government than
a reformed public sector."
ACT's attorney general has said that the decision about public or private
involvement in any future facility should not be based on ideology or an
unquestioning adherence to past practice.
Inquest into death at Mt. Gambier
A coroner's inquiry into the December 1995 death of prisoner Joe Susic at
Group 4-run Mt. Gambier prison in South Australia opened in April. Mr Susic
died of a heroin overdose. The early stages of the inquiry were concerned
with how the prisoner had access to the drug.
The Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) is holding a conference on
prison privatisation in Melbourne in June. Billed as a correctional case
study to explore the public policy implications of the move towards
privatisation, the event has received what the AIC refers to as "the
generous support" of Corrections Corporation of Australia and Group 4
Correction Services, both of which run prisons in Australia.
But Justice Action, a Sydney-based organisation, has criticised the AIC on
the grounds that the "majority of participants represent either the private
interests or the public agencies and institutions which engage their
services.' It wants the AIC to dismiss the corporate sponsorship and to
arrange a more balanced programme.
Justice Action +61 2 9281-5407, 5100, Fax: 9281-5303,
AIC conference details:
PO Box 139, Calwell,
Fax: + +62929002.
Details: Kathleen Daly, Fax: + + 738755608. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
QCORR's new Board
The Queensland Corrections Board, which is overseeing the transition of
Queensland Corrections to a government-owned corporation, will be headed by
Mr Jim Kennedy. He is a director of Commonwealth Bank, Quantas, MIM
Holdings, Queensland Investment Corporation and Pacific Dunlop. In a 1988
review of Queensland's correction system, Mr Kennedy recommended that the
state's prisons should be privately run. Other board members are: a
financial analyst; a lawyer; a businesswoman; a managing partner of
accountants/consultants KPMG; a Queensland
Treasury assistant and a trade union official.