Page 4660 - Week 13 - Tuesday, 31 October 2017

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Further opportunities for employment within the bakery will be explored over the next few months, with consideration of the employment of a second baker. Like all employment in the AMC, employment in the bakery depends on a detainee’s suitability for the role and the completion of appropriate training. Staff at the AMC are working to better link employment opportunities with formal education. Women working in the bakery will complete foundation skills training, and AMC staff are working to complement on-the-job training with relevant formal vocational qualifications.

Women are already undertaking five units from the certificate II for retail bakery assistants, and AMC staff aim to have formal arrangements in place by the end of this year with the external training provider to provide the full certificate. This is a nationally recognised qualification, and detainees who commence the course in custody are able to complete their education in the community. The units currently taught are to use hygienic practices in food safety; clean kitchen, premises and equipment; participate in safe work practices; clean and sanitise equipment; and provide production assistance for bread products.

Employment and training while in custody is an important part of detainee rehabilitation. The training and skills learned during their course of employment in the bakery will enhance opportunities for women to seek employment after their release from the AMC and, in turn, reduce the likelihood of them returning to custody.

The relocation will better facilitate structured days for our female detainees and promote engagement in meaningful activity. I am hopeful that employment in the bakery will become a coveted role and that the relocation of female detainees to a central location will encourage more detainees to engage in the opportunity. Of course, moving women into an area currently occupied by men will have an impact on the male detainees currently in the accommodation unit. I can reassure members that all the male detainees currently located within the unit now designated for female detainees will be relocated appropriately throughout the centre, with careful consideration with regard to placement.

As always, the safety and security of the centre and of staff and detainees will inform placement decisions. All detainees, including those with high-level needs, will be assessed appropriately by case managers, senior corrections staff and healthcare professionals if necessary to determine the most appropriate accommodation option. Male detainees will remain at all times separate from female detainees. Screening will also be put in place so that there are no inappropriate line of sight issues between the men and the women.

There will be flow-on benefits from moving women currently accommodated in the management unit into alternative accommodation. Relocating the females from the management unit allows for corrections staff to once again have this area as an option for managing difficult and challenging behaviours within a purpose-built area. I acknowledge that there may be members in the Assembly who are resistant to the idea of relocating the women. We are all comfortable with the idea that cottage style living encourages independence and assists in the development of essential life skills

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