26 September 2023

Prisoner training wins Awards for Justice

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The Department of Justice has been successful at the 2022 Australian Training Awards, with its Prisoner Traineeship Program winning gold in the Australian Apprenticeships-Employer Award category.

The program, Raising the Bar Behind Bars, helps to improve employment prospects for prisoner trainees and apprentices.

Commissioner for Corrective Services, Mike Reynolds said the program had supported more than 4,700 prisoners in apprenticeships or traineeships and had a completion rate of 70 per cent.

The Making Tracks program, which opens training pathways for prisoners to help them prepare to enter or re-enter the workplace, took out bronze in the Industry Collaboration Award.

Commissioner Reynolds said Making Tracks was a collaborative industry training and employment initiative designed to deliver vocational education and training (VET) within prison that was relevant and appropriate to the needs of prisoners and the businesses that employed them.

“It’s great to see our services being recognised on a national platform, Commissioner Reynolds said.

“The work done to help prisoners gain employment plays a significant role in reducing recidivism,” he said.

“Australian research shows that those prisoners who complete traineeships in prison have a 16 per cent reduction in their return-to-prison rates.”

Assistant Commissioner Rehabilitation and Reintegration, Christine Laird said it was a privilege to lead a team that was passionate and driven to improve outcomes for people in custody.

“Our aim is to make sure as many prisoners as possible leave job-ready, confident and qualified to join the workforce,” Assistant Commissioner Laird said.

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