Prison inspection report released for Invercargill Prison

The Office of the Inspectorate today released an inspection report into Invercargill Prison.

Inspections provide a ‘window into prisons’, giving early warning of emerging risks and challenges, and highlighting areas of innovation and good practice.

“The report found that, in general, the prison provided an environment in which prisoners’ basic needs were met and prisoners were kept safe,” said Chief Inspector Janis Adair. “The prison provided a good range of rehabilitation, work, and education and training opportunities.”

The prison’s custodial staff were active in managing risks to safety and good order. Staff actively supervised and interacted with prisoners to keep them engaged and maintain good order. Levels of prisoner-on-prisoner violence and intimidation were low.

Inspections are carried out against a set of healthy prison standards derived from United Nations guidelines on the treatment of people in detention. These standards consider all aspects of prison life, with a particular focus on four guiding principles:

  • Safety: Prisoners are held safely
  • Respect: Prisoners are treated with respect for human dignity
  • Rehabilitation: Prisoners are able, and expect, to engage in activity that is likely to benefit them
  • Reintegration: Prisoners are prepared for release into the community and helped to reduce their likelihood of re-offending

This is the fourth inspection report released since the Office of the Inspectorate’s role was enhanced and its functions were expanded last year.

The Office of the Inspectorate is part of the Department of Corrections, but is required to act independently in its inspections and other investigations. The Office of the Inspectorate also carries out investigations into complaints from people under Correction’s management, investigates all deaths in custody, and can be tasked to carry out special investigations.

Note: For context and completeness, this statement should be viewed alongside Corrections’ response to the Invercargill Report.

Read the Invercargill Prison Inspection Report on our website