On Friday15th February, Minister Rattenbury announced a new justice reinvestment program for the ACT: Building Communities Not Prisons. In good news, the Minister ruled out any future expansion of the high security campus of the Alexander Maconochie Centre (AMC), and announced an initial $14.5 million of funds will be redirected away from prison expansion into a range of community programs, legislative reforms and policy initiatives, as part of the midyear budget review process.
But WCHM is concerned that the new initiatives announced do not mention the women in the AMC, despite the fact that the numbers of women in the AMC have been increasing, and that women are limited in their access to rehabilitation programs and to the current Transitional Release Centre.
The initiatives that the Building Communities Not Prisons program will include are:
- A new Reintegration Centre (building upon the current Transitional Release Centre), with 80 extra beds which will allow a wide range of rehabilitation programs to be delivered in partnership with non-government and government organisations.
- A bail accommodation transitional support service
An article by the Canberra Times can be found here about the announcement.
Lorana Bartel from the University of Canberra wrote an article for The Conversation about the ACT’s investment in justice reinvestment.
And ACTCOSS also released a media release about the announcement.