HIGH-RISK inmates will be targeted under a new correctional centre model placing five new jobs across Tamworth and Glen Innes.
The goal is to reduce reoffending with tailor made plans for inmates while they are in custody and support for their release Tamworth Correctional Centre governor Bill Fittler said.
“We provide a wide range of services, a lot is drug and alcohol related so we have a suite of programs to deal with that,” he said.
“There’s programs for domestic violence, violence and a range of psychological services because mental health is a big issue.
“We’ve picked up two new roles which links in with the needs and intensive case management and the inmates have been responding well.”
With 89 beds, the Tamworth remand centre is consistently close to full, servicing courts in Armidale, Tamworth and north towards Moree.
“Even though we have a small bed capacity we’re very busy with a turnover similar to Sydney jails with 600 inmates,” Mr Fittler said.
The big focus is on family contact, education and housing – all can play a big role in an inmates likelihood to reoffend.
There will be regular reviews of the case management to see how it’s improving rates of reoffending Mr Fittler said.
“Across the board there’s been a rising rate of reoffending reflective of conditions in the community and influences particularly of drugs like ice,” he said.
“There are a lot of social and employment issues that have to be addressed – hopefully this will pull all of that together and give offenders a chance to be reintegrated into the community.”
The units will employ about 150 staff across the state Correctional Services NSW commissioner Peter Severin said.
“We are committed to driving down the rate of reoffending and these newly created positions will form part of a clear plan to address that,” he said.
“The improved model provides a more consistent approach to cash managing offenders throughout their contact with the correctional system, particularly in cases where they cycle between community supervision and custody.
“More importantly, every contact with an offender will be focused on reducing their reoffending risk.”
The case management units are part of a $330 million state government strategy to reduce reoffending.
Nearly 20,000 inmates are expected to benefit from the new initiative over the next three years.