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​Australia celebrates correctional officers

Published date: Friday, 18 January 2019

[PDF of this media release]

Today marks National Corrections Day, celebrating the 9,000 correctional officers in NSW – and 25,000 across Australia – who work around the clock to keep the community safe.

NSW Attorney General and Acting Minister for Corrections Mark Speakman said our hardworking correctional officers work with offenders in prison, offenders on parole and offenders serving sentences in the community.  

“Corrections is an important but sometimes dangerous career and, on behalf of the community, I applaud Corrective Services NSW staff for choosing a job dedicated to keeping us safe, often under very difficult circumstances,” Mr Speakman said.

“The NSW Government is backing its correctional staff with a major reform program to deliver a prison system that accommodates more inmates, operates more efficiently and has a greater focus on rehabilitation, without compromising safety and security.”

It also led a national push for the introduction of the Australian Corrections Medal to recognise excellence in correctional officers.

This year, National Corrections Day highlights the work of officers overseeing inmates in prison industries and supervising offenders on community-service work in particular.

Prison industries produce goods under contract for local councils and businesses, returning about $13 million last year to NSW correctional centre budgets. This has assisted in reducing the burden on taxpayers, as well as giving inmates the opportunity to learn valuable skills to help get their lives on track.

In NSW, about 1,600 Community Correction officers supervise offenders on parole and on court-ordered community service work. Community service work contributes about $15 million in free labour to more than 560 non-profit organisations.

Corrective Services NSW Commissioner Peter Severin said he was proud of all staff across the organisation who continue to work hard rehabilitating offenders. 

“The field of corrections is extremely challenging, but I am proud to say that our staff are some of the world’s best,” Mr Severin said.