Instead of an All Black having sex in a toilet, might the PM offer a comment on weekly fight clubs in his private prison?
Serco’s failings at Mt Eden Correctional Facility have been laid bare in a damning report, which reveals weekly “fight clubs”, “freely available” drugs and cellphones smuggled in by prison staff, and negligent guards who may have missed violent behaviour because they were playing table tennis and pool within the jail.
The Corrections chief inspector’s report, released this morning, also revealed that inmates at the remand prison went unsupervised in unlocked cells for up to two and a half hours, partly because of a rostering system which wrongly said people were on duty when they were sometimes on leave or had resigned.
Well, well, well, and what does SERCO have to say about lying and taking millions for a prison system that made Mad Max look like progressive prison policy?
Serco’s Asia Pacific chief executive Mark Irwin said this morning that the company had accepted all of the inspector’s recommendations “in full”.
He also apologised for the company’s performance at the prison.
“In 2015 certain important areas of service delivery fell below levels which our customer, the Department of Corrections, the Minister of Corrections and the people of New Zealand had a right to expect, and for that, we are truly sorry.”
“Important lessons have been learnt, and we have paid the Crown $8m recognising this and the costs incurred by the Department in taking over the management of the prison in July 2015.”
Irwin said MECF was a “very challenging” prison to manage.
As the chief inspector observed in his report, the jail had a large proportion of high-risk prisoners, and high turnover as the result of its large remand population.
Serco said MECF had “performed well” from the beginning of its contract in 2010 until 2014, lowering the rates of self-harm and violence.
What a load of horse hit! Do they think we are stupid and don’t have memories longer than 3 months? If SERCO are really this sorry why did they go to the High Court last year to try and censor the very report they are now so sorry about?
They got caught lying, they manipulated the truth, hid what they knew about prisoner abuse and when a watered down report was finally presented, they took it to the High Court to try and hide what they did.
And then after all that, they said sorry.
Seeing as the current news cycle is now being dominated by the media sending cameras into the very bathroom an All Black had sex in, I’d say this is likely to be ignored.