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A significant number of offenders exiting custody on parole have fundamental needs, such as housing and employment, and complex needs, such as mental health, which must be addressed if they are to successfully reintegrate back into the community.
A key component of the NSW Government’s Strategy to Reduce Reoffending is the expansion of support services which provide parolees with practical practical assistance with housing and employment, and supportive case management and mentoring.
These additional services will assist with stabilising parolees so that they are able to more effectively engage with rehabilitative interventions. Long term institutionalised prisoners will have access to a more graduated transition from custody to parole, to better prepare them for the change.
Benefits include an increased number of offenders with short sentences accessing rehabilitation initiatives to reduce reoffending risks by assisting transition to the community. These outcome measures support CSNSW case management approach and delivery.
To better plan an offender’s reintegration, updates have been made to CSNSW’s Intake Screening Questionnaire (ISQ), which is used to gather information on all inmates at the beginning of their time in custody.
Participation in, and completion of, the NEXUS program will increase. NEXUS aims to provide information and resources to inmates to assist them to prepare for re-entry to the community.
The Transitional Support stream of the Funded Partnership Initiative will be expanded to contract non-government organisations to provide practical assistance for support services, such as housing and employment.
Additional transitional supported accommodation in the Hunter and Illawarra regions will become available.
A new Volunteer Mentoring Service preparing offenders for reintegration. This will provide a pathway assisting inmates to access external leave in cases where no other appropriate sponsor is available. This support will extend into the post release period.
Coordination of 3,900 referrals of released offenders over five years to Australian Community Support Organisation for the Transition Reintegration and Community Connection program (On TRACC). The program will provide individualised support to parolees to assist them to reintegrate, particularly in the first 16 weeks of parole.