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Report on Government Services 2018

Part C, Chapter 8

Corrective services

This chapter reports on prison custody and a range of community corrections orders and programs for adult offenders which are delivered separately by the eight states and territories.

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  • Key Facts
  • Indicator Framework
  • Indicator Results
  • Indigenous Data

In 2016-17, an average of 40 059 people per day were held in Australian prisons of which 8.1 per cent were female and 27.6 per cent were Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander prisoners. Nationally, 18.4 per cent were held in privately operated prisons.

Nationally, corrective services agencies operated 114 custodial facilities at 30 June 2017. Community corrections is responsible for a range of non-custodial sanctions and also manages prisoners who are released into the community and continue to be subject to corrective services supervision. In some jurisdictions, community corrections responsibility includes managing offenders on supervised bail orders.

In 2016-17, an average of 68 110 offenders per day were serving community corrections orders, of which 19.1 per cent were female and 20.1 per cent were Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander offenders.

Nationally in 2016-17, net operating expenditure on corrective services including depreciation was $4.1 billion, a real increase of 7.2 per cent from the previous year. Changes in expenditure need to be considered in the context of the growth in corrective services populations over time.

Corrective services aim to contribute to the protection and creation of safer communities through the effective management of offenders and prisoners, commensurate with their needs and the risks they pose to the community, by providing:

  • a safe, secure and humane custodial environment
  • appropriate management of community corrections orders
  • programs and services that address the causes of offending, maximise the chances of successful reintegration into the community, and encourage offenders to adopt a law abiding way of life.

Governments aim for corrective services to meet these objectives in an equitable and efficient manner.

The performance indicator framework provides information on equity, efficiency and effectiveness, and distinguishes the outputs and outcomes of corrective services. The performance indicator framework shows which data are complete and comparable in the 2018 Report.

Indicator framework

An overview of the Corrective services performance indicator results are presented. Information to assist the interpretation of these data can be found in the indicator interpretation boxes in the Corrective services chapter and attachment tables.

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Effectiveness — Appropriateness indicators

Education and training

Percentage of eligible prisoners participating in education and training courses, 2016-17

Most recent data for this measure are comparable and complete, subject to caveats
 NSWVicQldWASATasACTNTAust
% 24.6 34.1 39.1 24.6 63.4 16.0 70.6 31.0 32.9
Source: Attachment table 8A.10

Employment

Number of prisoners employed as a percentage of those eligible to work, 2016-17

Most recent data for this measure are comparable and complete, subject to caveats
 NSWVicQldWASATasACTNTAust
% 78.4 87.1 68.8 68.7 68.0 59.0 74.7 78.7 74.7
Source: Attachment table 8A.11

Time out-of-cells

Average number of hours per day that prisoners are not confined to their cells or units, 2016-17

Most recent data for this measure are comparable and complete, except for NT where data were based on a single point in time
 NSWVicQldWASATasACTNTAust
Open 10.1 14.8 15.6 16.0 15.3 16.8 11.5 15.5 12.4
Secure 6.8 10.9 9.8 11.7 8.9 8.6 8.7 9.9 9.5
Total 8.0 11.4 10.3 12.3 9.5 8.8 8.9 12.5 10.1
Source: Attachment table 8A.12

Prison utilisation

Annual daily average prisoner population as a percentage of the number of single occupancy cells and designated beds in shared occupancy cells, 2016‑17

Most recent data for this measure are comparable (subject to caveats) but not complete
 NSWVicQldWASATasACTNTAust
Open 108.5 na 81.7 99.0 na 96.5 41.9 87.5 101.3
Secure 133.0 na 115.8 120.3 na 89.3 103.6 112.9 121.2
Total 122.9 na 112.0 116.3 na 89.4 101.5 99.5 115.8
Source: Attachment table 8A.13

Effectiveness — Quality indicators

Apparent unnatural deaths

Rate of prisoner deaths from apparent unnatural causes (deaths per 100 prisoners), by Indigenous status, 2016-17

Most recent data for this measure are comparable and complete, subject to caveats
 NSWVicQldWASATasACTNTAust
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander 0.03 0.04 0.08 0.07 0.05
Non-Indigenous 0.11 0.05 0.29 0.05
Source: Attachment table 8A.15

Number of prisoner deaths from apparent unnatural causes, by Indigenous status, 2016-17

Most recent data for this measure are comparable and complete, subject to caveats
 NSWVicQldWASATasACTNTAust
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander 1 1 2 1 5
Non-Indigenous 11 3 1 15
Source: Attachment table 8A.15

Assaults in custody

Number of victims of violent physical attacks reported over the year, per 100 prisoners, 2016-17 – prisoner on prisoner (rate)

Most recent data for this measure are not comparable but are complete, subject to caveats
 NSWVicQldWASATasACTNTAust
Serious assaults 0.29 1.88 3.08 0.83 1.50 2.78 3.59 0.18 ..
Assaults 27.48 20.88 10.49 4.13 6.87 7.31 15.72 3.29 ..
Source: Attachment table 8A.16

Number of victims of violent physical attacks reported over the year, per 100 prisoners, 2016-17 – prisoner on officer (rate)

Most recent data for this measure are not comparable but are complete, subject to caveats
 NSWVicQldWASATasACTNTAust
Serious assaults 0.03 0.11 0.14 0.17 0.17 ..
Assaults 1.55 1.63 1.01 1.60 0.63 1.22 1.80 0.37 ..
Source: Attachment table 8A.16

Efficiency indicators

Cost per prisoner/offender

Average net daily cost of providing corrective services per prisoner and per offender (excluding capital costs, payroll tax, prisoner transport and prisoner health expenditure), 2016-17 (dollars)

Most recent data for this measure are comparable and complete, subject to caveats
 NSWVicQldWASATasACTNTAust
Prisoner 172.80 304.12 183.07 236.79 209.80 296.53 297.75 204.55 214.94
Offender 21.41 28.98 12.35 38.70 16.52 14.05 32.55 46.92 21.61
Source: Attachment table 8A.17

Outcome indicators

Completion of community orders

Percentage of orders completed during the year that were not breached for failure to meet the order requirements or because further offences were committed, 2016-17

Most recent data for this measure are comparable and complete, subject to caveats
 NSWVicQldWASATasACTNTAust
% 73.5 62.9 77.0 60.8 72.0 86.4 70.3 71.4 72.2
Source: Attachment tables 8A.20

Escapes

Number and rate (number per 100 prisoners) of escapes by prisoners from secure custody and open custody, 2016-17

Most recent data for these measures are comparable and complete, subject to caveats
 NSWVicQldWASATasACTNTAust
Open (rate per 100) 0.26 0.22 1.51 1.05 0.38
Secure (rate per 100) 0.04 0.02 0.04 0.46 0.34 0.03
Open (no.) 12 2 10 8 32
Secure (no.) 3 1 2 2 3 11
Source: Attachment table 8A.20

Notes

These data and caveats for these data are available in Chapter 8 and Attachment 8A.

na Not available. .. Not applicable. – Nil or rounded to zero.

Performance indicator data for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in this chapter are available in the attachment tables listed below. Contextual data and further supporting information can be found in the chapter.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corrective services data
Table number Table title
Table 8A.15 Apparent unnatural deaths by Indigenous status (number and rate)
Table 8A.19 Completion of community orders (per cent)