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Issued: 1 December 2014
Attorney General and Minister for Justice Brad Hazzard today saw first-hand how the Heavy Vehicle Driver Training Program – which operates at five of the state's prisons - is skilling up inmates to get jobs when they are released.
"This program, which I saw in operation today at the Outer Metropolitan Multi-Purpose Correctional Centre, is so effective because it gives inmates real skills for real jobs," Mr Hazzard said.
"Giving inmates the skills they need to gain employment when they are released is one of the most effective ways of reducing reoffending.
"This program teaches a specific skill that's within the reach of many inmates, and it's a skill that's very much in demand in the thriving industry of transportation and logistics."
Corrective Services NSW Commissioner Peter Severin said inmates approaching the end of their sentence are carefully selected to participate in the program – which offers three license classes: Heavy Rigid; Heavy Combination; and Multi Combination
"So far 112 inmates have successfully completed the program to upgrade their licenses - of those who've been released, 61 have found employment," Mr Severin said.
"This program's success is largely due to the contribution made by Corrective Services NSW staff and the dedicated instructors."
NSW Liberal candidate for Londonderry, Bernard Bratusa, said the program is a good example of rehabilitation.
"We want inmates to come out of our prison system better people with skills to gain employment and make a real contribution to the community," Bernard Bratusa said.
The Heavy Vehicle Training Program, which operates in the Outer Metropolitan Multi-Purpose Correctional Centre and Dillwynia Correctional Centre for women (both on the John Morony Correctional Complex near Windsor) and at Oberon, Bathurst and Cessnock Correctional Centres, began in September 2012.
"Programs like this are a win for inmates and a win for the community," Bernard Bratusa added.
Heavy vehicle training drives down re-offending [PDF 191KB]