Kelvin Davis missing in action

Today Minister of Corrections Kelvin Davis appeared before the Justice Select Committee to brief the committee about the 92 per cent increase in assaults against Corrections Officers that has taken place since he became Minister, National’s Corrections spokesperson Simeon Brown says.

“Instead of providing answers, the Minister offered excuses and failed to answer why he has not taken earlier action nor requested regular briefings on violence in our prisons until February 2021.

“It is astounding that the Minister of Corrections took so long to realise he needed to be monitoring the amount of violence in our prisons. Violence has been increasing rapidly under his watch. His lack of oversight has left frontline Corrections Officers powerless and vulnerable to prisoner violence.

“Whilst the Minister has recently launched a plan on addressing violence and aggression in our prisons, none of the initiatives within the plan come with timeframes and targets that can be measured and judged on whether they are working or have been completed.

“Actions speak louder than words and what our frontline Corrections Officers are wanting is action to hold prisoners to account so they can be kept safe when they are at work.

“National has released a 5 point plan on how we will address violence in our prisons. We do not tolerate violence against Corrections Officers and urge the Minister to wake up and take firm action now.

You can read more about National's plan to address prison violence here.