Reducing reoffending and delivering positive social outcomes in South Australia

Published: 14 Sep 2020

Serco has developed and implemented a purpose-designed remand strategy for Adelaide Remand Centre (ARC) that supports South Australia’s target to reduce reoffending by 10 per cent.

Serco’s partnership with 133-year old prison support organisation, OARS Community Transitions, has already facilitated more than 700 interventions at the centre to address homelessness, drug, alcohol and gambling issues prior to bail, with the aim to prevent reoffending in the community.

Chief Executive Officer of OARS Leigh Garrett acknowledged the success of the on-the-ground partnership confirming that prisoners are not only embracing their support within the centre but more importantly, many are continuing to access their services beyond release.

“Since working alongside Serco at the centre, OARS have achieved a post-release engagement rate of almost 40 per cent, and this is despite our support being of a voluntary nature. What this tells us is that our collaborative approach and delivery of services is working to reduce reoffending in the community,” Mr Garrett said.

Serco’s work with AnglicareSA and their The Arches Bail Accommodation Support Program provides prisoners with an accelerated pathway into accommodation prior to their bail hearings, allowing those eligible, to be released sooner.

Since the introduction of the direct pathway, uptake of the program has increased significantly with 30 prisoners referred in the last month.

ARC General Manager Mark Walters said from day one of operations at ARC, Serco had been facilitating Medication Assisted Treatment for Opioid Dependence (MATOD) onsite.

“The implementation of this opiate replacement therapy program at the centre means prisoners can now receive the treatment they need onsite, which is important for safety and also reduces the strain on community health services,” Mr Walters said.

Serco’s work with TAFE SA and onsite Literacy and Numeracy teaching volunteers is also supporting education and training outcomes that will enable prisoners to gain employment once released back into the community.

“Our program extends activities traditionally undertaken in remand and focuses on providing a broad range of reintegration support services to all prisoners. We are working with a variety of local community organisations to deliver our strategy, which includes services such as relapse prevention, court advocacy, treatment services and holistic family support,” Mr Walters said.

“Everything we do at ARC is focused on reducing reoffending. We will continue developing our programs and strong community partnerships to deliver positive outcomes for prisoners and the local community.”

Serco commenced operational management of the ARC in August 2019 and is responsible for all custodial, health, intervention, educational, training, and asset maintenance services at the Centre.

ENDS

Media contact: Tim Evans, +61 409 389 358
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