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Procedure - Inter-facility Prisoner Contact


Purpose
1.Definitions
2.Process
3.Eligibility
4.Application
5.Assessment of inter-facility contact
6.Approval of inter-facility contact
6.1Security classification / visit arrangements and restrictions
6.2Advice to offender
7.Frequency and duration
8.Searches
9.Review
10.Cancellation of contact plan
11.Transfer of offender
12.Inter-facility visits
12.1Accommodated children participating in visits
13.Inter-facility telephone calls
14.Inter-facility video-conference calls

Purpose

To provide a process that allows an offender, with an immediate family member in another corrective services facility or a detainee in a youth detention centre, to maintain contact with that other family member.

1. Definitions

'Contact officer' means an officer nominated by the general manager of a corrective services facility to be responsible for the assessment and coordination of inter-facility prisoner contact for the facility.

'Contact plan' means an approved program of inter-facility prisoner contact by visit, telephone or video-conference call.

'De-facto partner/partnership' Refer Acts Interpretation Act 1954, s 32DA

'Immediate family member' means a person-

  1. who is in a proven relationship of marriage, de-facto, mother, father, son, daughter, brother, sister with the prisoner;
  2. who is, or has been, the primary care giver to the prisoner or to whom the prisoner is, or has been, the primary care giver;
  3. culturally is a significant family or kin member.

Refer section 3 of this procedure.

'Inter-facility prisoner contact' means contact by way of telephone, video-conference or visit between prisoners accommodated at different facilities or a prisoner and a detainee accommodated at a youth detention centre.

'Receiving facility' means the corrective services facility or youth detention centre hosting the inter-facility contact.

'Requesting facility' means the corrective services facility or youth detention centre accommodating the prisoner or detainee requesting the inter-facility contact.

2. Process

Inter-facility contact is important link in maintaining relationships with significant members of a prisoner's family support system. Maintenance of these relationships may assist in reducing a prisoner's risk of self harm and the reunification of the family unit when the prisoner is released from custody.

Inter-facility visits, telephone or video-conference calls may be granted between immediate family members where emergency or special circumstances exist and such contact is considered necessary for the welfare of all parties concerned.

3. Eligibility

A prisoner may apply for inter-facility visit with a prisoner at another corrective services facility or a detainee accommodated at a youth detention centre if the requesting prisoner is-

  1. a father, mother, grandfather, grandmother, step-father or step-mother of the prisoner or detainee;
  2. a son, daughter, grandson, grand-daughter, step-son or step-daughter of the prisoner or detainee;
  3. a brother, sister, half-brother, half-sister, step-brother or step-sister of the prisoner or detainee;
  4. an uncle or aunt of the prisoner or detainee;
  5. a nephew or niece of the prisoner or detainee;
  6. a cousin of the prisoner or detainee;
  7. if the prisoner is or was married, in addition to paragraphs (a) to (f)-a prisoner or detainee who is or was a relative, of the kind described in any of those paragraphs, of the prisoner's spouse;
  8. a defacto partner;
  9. if it is established that the prisoner has been the primary care giver of the prisoner or detainee being visited; or
  10. a culturally significant family or kin member of the prisoner or detainee.

4. Application

A prisoner requesting inter-facility prisoner contact must submit administrative form - Application for Inter-facility/Youth Detention Centre Prisoner Contact.

5. Assessment of inter-facility contact

The contact officer of the requesting facility must-

  1. assess the suitability of the prisoner for inter-facility contact. Refer administrative form - Assessment for Inter-facility/Youth Detention Centre Prisoner Contact - Requesting Facility;
  2. develop a contact plan. Refer administrative form - Inter-facility/Youth Detention Centre Contact Plan.

The assessment and contact plan must be forwarded to the contact officer of the receiving facility/youth detention centre for consideration.

The contact officer of the receiving facility/youth detention centre must conduct an assessment of the suitability for inter-facility contact of the prisoner/detainee at the receiving facility. Refer administrative form - Assessment for Inter-facility/Youth Detention Centre Prisoner Contact - Receiving Facility.

The-

  1. receiving facility/centre assessment; and
  2. requesting facility/centre assessment and contact plan,

must be forwarded to the general manager of the receiving facility/youth detention centre for approval.

6. Approval of inter-facility contact

The following factors should be taken into account when deciding an application for inter-facility contact-

  1. whether the contact is desired by both prisoners;
  2. whether the contact is necessary given the period of imprisonment being served, and the period of imprisonment still to be served, by either prisoner;
  3. whether there are any issues that would not support the contact, for example, evidence of domestic violence, domestic violence orders or comments made in court transcripts;
  4. whether the contact is an important element in the maintenance of the family support system;
  5. whether both prisoners are demonstrating an acceptable standard of institutional behaviour;
  6. the prisoners' security classifications;
  7. whether there are any adverse intelligence reports relating to either prisoner;
  8. for an inter-facility visit, whether there are any security risks associated with the escort of the visiting prisoner.

6.1 Security classification / visit arrangements and restrictions

Offender's Security Classification Requesting Facility

Offender's Security Classification Receiving Facility

Type of Contact

Restrictions of Visit

Low

Low

inter-facility visit telephone call videoconference

Subject to operational requirements, inter-facility visit to be on an alternating basis between receiving and requesting facilities

Low

High

High

Low

inter-facility visit telephone call videoconference

Inter-facility visit must occur at the centre where the high security offender is accommodated unless there are exceptional compassionate circumstances approved by the Executive Director, Custodial Operations

High

High

telephone videoconference

Inter-facility visit not permitted unless there are exceptional compassionate reasons


Offenders who request and are not granted inter-facility visits because of their security classification should be granted an inter-facility video-conference.

6.2 Advice to offender

Reasons for not granting approval must be recorded on administrative form - Assessment for Inter-facility/Youth Detention Centre Prisoner Contact - Requesting Facility and returned to the requesting facility/centre.

The requesting offender must be advised of the outcome of the application on administrative form - Notification to Prisoner - Inter-facility/Youth Detention Centre Contact.

7. Frequency and duration

Inter-facility/centre visits must only be approved if the facilities/centre are within two hours travelling time by road. An offender, accommodated at a facility outside the two hour travel limit, may apply for an inter-facility/centre telephone or video-conference call.

Type of Contact

Frequency and Duration

Visit

Monthly. Not in addition to videoconference contact. Time limits determined by the general manager of the receiving facility having regard to operational issues.

Telephone call

Weekly. May be in addition to visit or videoconference contact. Time limits consistent with those set for other offender telephone calls to be determined by the general manager of the requesting facility.

Videoconference

Monthly, not in addition to visit contact. Time limits consistent with those set for other offender videoconference calls to be determined by the general manager of the requesting facility.


8. Searches

For an offender accommodated at a high security facility granted an inter-facility visit, a search requiring the removal of clothing must only occur upon leaving from and returning to the facility at which they are accommodated.

An exception to this is where there is a reasonable suspicion that the offender is concealing contraband. If there is a reasonable suspicion a further search requiring the removal of clothing may be conducted at the receiving facility. Refer CSA s 37.

Scanning, general searches and personal searches of an offender may be conducted at any time to ensure the security and good order of the corrective services facility and the safety of persons in the facility. Refer CSA ss 33-39 and procedure - Search - Prisoners and Corrective Services Facilities.

9. Review

An offender's contact plan must be reviewed by the respective contact officers-

  1. no more than three months after the commencement of the contact plan;
  2. at six monthly intervals following the initial review;
  3. upon the transfer of the offender or detainee to another facility/centre;
  4. upon any adverse behavioural reports in relation to the offender or detainee; and
  5. at any time considered necessary by a contact officer.

Officers supervising inter-facility/youth detention centre visits must complete administrative form - Visit Report and forward a copy to the contact officer at the requesting facility and the receiving facility/centre for use when conducting reviews.

10. Cancellation of contact plan

A contact officer may recommend that an inter-facility contact plan be cancelled. The relevant general manager, having regard to the reasons for the recommendation, may cancel the contact plan. Following cancellation of a plan the general manager of the other facility/centre must be notified.

11. Transfer of offender

When an offender is transferred to another facility, the contact officer of the new facility must negotiate with the general manager of the new facility for the continuation of the contact plan.

12. Inter-facility visits

Inter-facility visits are to be coordinated by the contact officers at the respective facilities/centre and facilitated by visits supervisors or other nominated officers at each facility/centre. Transport arrangements of offenders and detainees to and from facilities are the responsibility of the requesting facility/centre. Except as provided in section 12.1 of this procedure the general manager of the Operational Support Services Unit may provide assistance.

An offender must be escorted by at least one officer from the requesting facility who must also assist in the overall supervision of the visit.

Refer procedure - Escort of Offenders (in-confidence)

12.1 Accommodated children participating in visits

When a child, accommodated with a female offender in a corrective services facility, participates in an inter-facility visit, the child's details must be recorded in the contact plan. Refer administrative form - Inter-Facility/Detention Centre Contact Plan. The female offender and child must not be transported by the Operational Support Services Unit.

A child, accompanied by an external carer to visit an offender at another facility, is the responsibility of the carer while in his/her care. Refer procedures - Accommodation of Children; Personal Visitors to Offenders; Search - Visitors

13. Inter-facility telephone calls

Inter-facility telephone calls must be coordinated by the relevant contact officers.

Telephone calls must be made and received on the Prisoner Telephone System (PTS) on a telephone designated for this purpose at each facility/centre. Unless determined otherwise by the general manager of the facility/centre at which the offender making a call is accommodated must meet the cost of the call.

All telephone calls should comply with procedure - Telephone and Video-conference Calls for Offenders. If considered necessary by the contact officer an offender may use a telephone other than a PTS telephone. In this event a corrective services officer must listen to the call.

Inter-facility telephone calls may occur between a Queensland facility and a facility in another State. Such calls should be facilitated by liaison between the contact officer in Queensland and the relevant authority in the other State.

14. Inter-facility video-conference calls

Inter-facility video-conference calls are to be coordinated by the contact officers at the respective facilities/centre and facilitated by visits supervisors or other nominated officers at each facility/centre.

Type of Contact

Costing

Between offenders in adult custody in Queensland.

Costs to be met on a rotating basis by the participating facilities.

Between an offender in adult custody and youth in detention in Queensland.

Between an offender in Queensland and an offender in another State.

Costs to be meet by the facility initiating the call.


All video-conference calls must comply with procedure - Telephone and Video-conference Calls for Offenders.





F P Rockett
Director-General





Version History

04/07/2007 Version 03 - 28/08/2006 Version 02 - 01/04/2003 Version 01