INDEPENDENT NEWS

Justice Sector’s Next Goal Must be to Reduce Prison Numbers

Published: Wed 30 Apr 2014 12:47 PM
Justice Sector’s Next Goal Must be to Reduce Prison Numbers
“The next challenge for the Better Public Service Reducing Crime and Reoffending Plan sticks out a mile. It’s revised goal now that it has achieved the lowest crime rate since 1978, is to reduce the imprisonment rate to the 1978 level of 88 per 100,0000 population. The current imprisonment rate is about 194 per 100,000.” says Rethinking Crime and Punishment.
The Justice Minister announced earlier this week that announcement that the total crime rate has reduced by 14 per cent between June 2011 and December 2013, the youth crime rate has dropped by 27 per cent, violent crime was down 10 per cent and overall re-offending is down by 11.7 per cent.
Spokesperson Kim Workman says that the Justice Sector is well capable of achieving such a goal, given the astounding results thus far. “The review of the BPS goals and objectives at the end of this year will provide an opportunity to develop a strategy around the reduction of imprisonment levels.
“The Minster points out that those crime reduction amount to 56,000-less crimes. It remains a mystery that these significant reductions in the crime rate, have not been matched by a reduction in prison numbers, which have stubbornly stayed between 8,400- and 8,600, (they are currently at 8,505.)“
The next BPS goal must surely be to reduce the imprisonment rate to the 1978 level of 88 prisoners per 100,000, which would more than halve the prison population.
ENDS

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