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Prisons capacity crisis worsens with inmate numbers surging

Apr 18, 2017

Stephan Knoll MP
Shadow Minister for Police, Emergency and Correctional Services
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Prisons capacity crisis worsens with inmate numbers surging


The Weatherill Labor Government’s mismanagement of the state’s prisons system has been further exposed as Parliament heard evidence from Corrections Executives which revealed a blowout in prisoner numbers.

Parliament’s Budget and Finance Committee heard today that South Australia’s prison population will explode by 300 to 3568 prisoners by 2021-22, without anywhere for these additional prisoners to be accommodated.

“This surge in prisoner numbers has exposed the Weatherill Labor Government’s failure to adequately implement a plan to avoid a capacity crisis in our prisons system,” said Shadow Minister for Correctional Services Stephan Knoll.

“Minister Malinauskas needs to explain how this prisons capacity crisis has been allowed to worsen to the point where the Government’s own projections of prisoners numbers leaves 300 prisoners without a prison!

“Prison overcrowding has already contributed to an increase in violence in our prisons and this creates unwarranted pressures on Correctional Services Officers who deserve a safe working environment.

“The overcrowding issue is exacerbated when prisoners are released into the community, with a demonstrated higher risk of reoffending resulting from unacceptable surges in numbers in our prisons system.

“Minister Malinauskas needs to be upfront with South Australians and be transparent about what he plans to do to address this crisis.

“South Australians deserve to feel safe in their community, but under Labor the crisis in our prisons is contributing to decent, hard-working people feeling less safe.”

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