The Guardian July 26, 2000


Unanimous recommendation:
No more women's prisons

Justice Action has called on the NSW Minister for Corrective Services, 
Bob Debus, to abandon plans to build a new women's jail at Windsor after 
the Upper House Select Committee on the Increase in Prisoner Population 
called for a moratorium on women's cells.

The Committee received 138 submissions from a range of individuals and 
organisations. "Only one submission supported the building of the new jail 
and that was from the Department of Corrective Services", said Kilty 
O'Gorman, a spokesperson for Justice Action.

"The community is now saying we want schools, hospitals and better social 
support not more jails.

"We call for the unanimous recommendations of the committee, including the 
wider use of social solutions to be immediately implemented", said Brett 
Collins, also from Justice Action.

"If Minister Bob Debus does not respect the unanimous recommendations of 
the Committee he is effectively negating the process of wide community 
consultation and logical decision outside of the law and order rhetoric", 
said Ms O'Gorman.

"Prisons have failed. They are horrendously expensive both in monetary and 
social terms. Now it is up to Mr Debus to ensure the community-based 
options are utilised", said Mr Collins.

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