October 08, 2013
Innovation possible in public prisons
Labour's corrections spokesperson says she's not accepting that private prisons are needed to create innovation.
Jacinda Ardern says indications from the prison staff union indicate the opposite, with under-staffing at Mt Eden Prison meaning a lot of essential work isn't being done.
She says prison operator Serco's sales pitch is that it can innovate in ways the public sector can't.
"Well I just don't buy that. There is no reason that we cannot, with good leadership at the top, operate a prison service that does do things differently, that gets better outcomes, that has prisoners who have a shot of reintegrating properly. There is no reason why that can only be the domain of a private operator, who to be honest, in the UK hasn't got the greatest reputation," Ms Ardern says.
She says the Government's efforts to promote rehabilitation and reintegration are commendable, and show what can happen when state agencies put their weight behind change.
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