The Andrews Labor Government’s new Community Corrections Services (CCS) changes will help make the community safer by focusing on people with the greatest risk of turning to crime, or those who have committed violent crimes in the past.
Commencing today, the new reforms will see offenders subjected to more intensive case management, and having access to more targeted rehabilitation and support services to help reduce reoffending.
The changes are part of the Labor Government’s record $233.3 million investment in Community Correctional Services, announced in the Victorian Budget 2016-17, and will strengthen community safety and hold offenders to account for their actions.
The Government is also providing a $10 million boost to treatment and rehabilitation services, including a new drug and alcohol program, and additional offending behaviour programs.
Specialist staff have been recruited and trained to manage different categories of offenders based on the offender’s risks and needs to help them break the cycle of reoffending.
Building on 147 new staff funded in the 15/16 Victorian Budget, more than 100 extra staff have already been recruited to manage and supervise offenders to ensure they comply with conditions set by the courts and provide support to reduce their risk of reoffending.
A dedicated Court Assessment and Prosecutions Service will provide specialist advice to the courts on order conditions and prosecute offenders who breach their orders.
Additional staff will continue to be recruited over the coming months, taking the total number of CCS staff to approximately 950 – an increase of more than three hundred over the last two years.
New CCS offices are opening across Victoria to support the record number of staff and to provide stronger case management for offenders.
Five new CCS locations have already opened across the state at Cranbourne, Derrimut, Pakenham, South Morang and Wonthaggi, with more new or upgraded locations to be rolled out over the coming months, including in regional areas.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Corrections Gayle Tierney
“We are ensuring our Community Corrections staff have manageable caseloads and the resources necessary to monitor and rehabilitate offenders – keeping our community safe.”
“While the scheme was set up by the former Liberal government, it was under resourced and high risk offenders weren’t being properly monitored and shockingly some of those offended during this time.”
“We have provided a record investment for better support to help break the cycle of re-offending.”