7 Feb 2012

Whare Oranga Ake meeting expectations - department says

7:16 pm on 7 February 2012

The Corrections Department says the first rehabilitation and re-integration unit for Maori prisoners is achieving everything it hoped it would.

Te Whare Oranga Ake, which is located just outside the main wire of Hawke's Bay Regional prison south-west of Hastings, opened in late July last year.

The unit is designed to give inmates the skills to cope with every day life outside jail.

Corrections Department Rehabilitation and Re-Integration Manager Alison Thom says, after a few teething problems, the partnership between inmates, a Maori community provider and prison services is now working really well.

She says, over the past two months, the programmes being run have really started to have a positive impact on inmates.

Ms Thom says her goal is to take the methods of re-integration which are proving successful at the whare and apply them in all prisons.