Title: Transfer of Prisoners
Category: Offender Management
Implement Date: 14 November 2011
Application: Custodial Operations
Standard Operating Procedures
Ownership: Offender Intervention Services
|2.||Transfer between corrective services facilities|
|2.1||Immediate placement considerations|
|2.2||Reasons for transfer|
|2.4||Notice of transfer|
|2.6||Inter-region involuntary transfer for capacity utilisation purposes|
|2.8||Medication and medical records|
|Helana Jones Centre|
|Transfers to the AIDS Medical Unit (Brisbane) (“AMU”)|
|2.9||Approval and dispute arbitrator|
|2.10||Contact privileges for prisoners|
|2.11||Prisoners assessed as suitable to transfer to a low security facility|
|2.12||DPSOA offenders in custody|
|3.||Review/Reconsideration of transfer|
|3.1||Automatic Review of Transfer|
|3.2||Reconsideration of Transfer|
|3.4||Transport and Escort|
|4.||Transfer to a corrective services facility for participation in a work order|
|5.||Transport to health facilities|
|5.1||Transport to hospital|
|6.||Transfers to court|
|6.1||Prisoners attending court in close proximity to their accommodation|
|6.2||Prisoners attending court in other locations|
|7.||Transfer from a corrective services facility to community supervision|
|8.||Transfer from community supervision to a corrective services facility|
|8.1||Upon admission to a corrective services facility|
|9.||Interstate Transfer - welfare reasons|
|9.1||Interstate Transfer - legal reasons|
To provide for the transfer of a prisoner from one location to another location.
When transferring within the correctional system, information regarding the transfer of responsibility for the management of a prisoner from one location to another must occur in a timely manner.
The sending facility must-
Refer procedures - Offender Photographs; Offender File Management (in-confidence); appendices - Offender File Content (in-confidence); File Model (in-confidence).
The receiving location must ensure the IOMS file is updated showing the admission of the prisoner and the IOMS RecFind database is updated showing the file has been received.
The authority to transfer a prisoner and all details of the transfer must be documented on IOMS.
A general manager must establish a process that ensures all required activities are competed prior to the transfer of a prisoner.
Refer administrative form - Offender Transfer (Example) Checklist
Before a decision is made to transfer a prisoner from a low to high security correctional centre for medical reasons, unless the nature of the circumstances otherwise require, QCS will receive medical information regarding the prisoners heath and treatment needs from Offender Health Services. In providing information to QCS, Offender Health Services will provide or obtain a medical opinion, including consultation with the relevant medical officer, if relevant to the particular health issue.
If a prisoner is serving a total period of imprisonment of three years or less and is classified as low security, the offender management team at the reception facility must consider the prisoner for initial placement in a low security facility in accordance with procedures - Admission; Assessment; Planning
A recommendation for transfer must be recorded and the prisoner advised of details of the recommendation. The delegate must record the reasons for a decision.
Refer Corrective Services Act 2006 (CSA), s. 68; Instrument of Limitation of Corrective Services Officers' Powers (in-confidence)
A prisoner may be transferred in order to-
Unless warranted for security reasons, the frequency of transfers should be minimised so the progress of a prisoner's Offender Rehabilitation Plan (ORP) is not impeded.
If a prisoner's security classification allows for transfer to more than one corrective services facility, the identified program requirements of the prisoner and access to visits from family should be taken into consideration.
The transfer of a prisoner subject to a maximum security order must be in accordance with standard operating procedures - Maximum Security Orders - Assessment, Approval, and Review; Maximum Security Units (in-confidence) - Prisoner Management; Maximum Security Units (in-confidence) - Security Management
The transfer of a prisoner subject to a Safety Order must be in accordance with the standard operating procedure - Safety Orders.
For the purpose of the implementation of transfers, corrective services facilities are grouped in regions.
Refer appendix - Regions within Custodial Operations.
The transfer of a prisoner between regions should be avoided but may occur as a result of operational needs or may be considered upon request of a prisoner.
Refer administrative form - Inter-Regional Transfer
The administrative form - Inter-Regional Transfer Suitability Assessment must be used when assessing the suitability of a prisoner for inter-region transfer.
A transferring prisoner must be provided with a copy of the administrative form - Inter-Regional Transfer and the prisoner must acknowledge receipt of the form. If the prisoner refuses to acknowledge receipt, a member of the review team must countersign and note the prisoner's refusal.
A copy of the document must be placed in section 2 on the offender file. The prisoner's acknowledgement of receipt of the form must be recorded on the acknowledgement sheet.
Refer procedure - Offender File Management (in-confidence) and administrative form - Acknowledgement Sheet.
If practicable a prisoner must be given notice of a transfer-
Prisoners may transfer in shorter timeframes in instances such as when the safety and security of a facility is compromised, including possible escape, or a prisoner is at risk. In this instance, the general manager or nominee of the sending facility must contact the general manager or nominee of the receiving facility to ensure the receiving facility is in a position to safely and securely accommodate and manage the prisoner, and provide all information and reasoning for the transfer.
If any transfer disputes arise, refer section 2.9 of this procedure.
A decision to transfer a prisoner may be taken at any time. A decision to transfer a prisoner from one corrective services facility to another should have regard to, but is not limited to, the following factors-
The Review Panel considering the prisoner's transfer must discuss with a prisoner, his/her preference for placement. The reasons for this preference must be recorded on IOMS in the Sentence Management Decision Making Record. Written submissions or brief notes of oral submissions must be maintained on IOMS or the offender file. If practicable, a Cultural Liaison Officer should be present when discussing transfer issues relating to an Indigenous prisoner.
In the case of a transfer as a result of a significant event (such as escape related information becoming available or the prisoner is at risk), the prisoner can be moved without convening a Review Panel.
Under exceptional circumstances a prisoner may apply in writing for transfer to another corrective services facility, outside of the review process.
A summary of the information and reasons for a transfer must be recorded in a Sentence Management Decision Making Record in IOMS by the sending facility.
Refer procedure - Assessment
A prisoner may be transferred on an involuntary basis in order to more effectively utilise Agency resources. Selection of prisoners must be made by a multi-disciplinary team. In the case of Indigenous prisoners, an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Liaison Officer/Counsellor must be included in the team. An Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Liaison Officer/Counsellor should consult, if practicable, with Community Elders and Justice Groups within the relevant regions during the selection process to establish a support network for Indigenous prisoners subject to involuntary transfer.
A structured process of selection, notification, information about the receiving facility, appeal, support and transition arrangements (including assessment and management of at-risk status, and family contact) must commence one week prior to physical transfer, unless the transfer is required to maintain the safety and security of the facility or the prisoner as per section 2.4 of this procedure.
A prisoner who is being considered for transfer must be monitored during the one week selection process, to-
Administrative form - Inter-Regional Transfer Suitability Assessment must be used when assessing a prisoner for inter-region transfer.
A prisoner who is at-risk of self harm or suicide must not be transferred (unless the transfer is required to maintain the safety and security of the facility or the prisoner as per section 2.4 of this procedure), however, if the prisoner is no longer at-risk, a transfer suitability assessment should be completed.
When assessing or reviewing an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander prisoner's placement, the requirement that the prisoner be accommodated as close as practicable to their family must be considered, refer CSR s. 4.
A prisoner may request a reconsideration of a decision made in relation to his/her proposed placement (refer section 3.2 of this procedure). In these instances, the transfer must not proceed until the reconsideration process is completed, unless the transfer is required to maintain the safety and security of the facility or the prisoner as per section 2.4 of this procedure.
Placement of prisoners subject to involuntary transfer must be considered at each scheduled and event based review (refer procedure - Review). The review must include assessment of the ongoing impact of dislocation, welfare and support needs and identify opportunities for support should the placement be required to continue.
Subject to availability of beds, prisoners who have been subject to involuntary inter-regional transfer should be offered the opportunity to return to their facility of origin in the month preceding discharge to facilitate community transition arrangements upon release from custody. If the prisoner is assessed as unsuitable to transfer back to their facility of origin, the prisoner's transitional arrangements and the provision of assistance to return to their community must be considered.
Prisoners should be provided the opportunity to pack personal issued property located in their cell prior to the transfer unless operational reasons necessitate a staff member to pack the property.
A temporary transfer occurs when a prisoner is expected to return within 21 days to his/her placement facility upon completion of an activity such as a medical/dental appointment, parole assessment/Parole Board appearance. For example, a prisoner placed at a low security facility who is temporarily transferred to a high security facility should be returned to his/her placement facility upon completion of the temporary transfer.
A temporary transfer should not be for a duration in excess of 21 days. A prisoner whose temporary transfer exceeds 21 days must not be automatically returned to the sending facility. An assessment must be conducted and considered by the chief executive or delegate prior to approval being granted to return to a low security facility. Refer CSA s. 68; Instrument of Delegation of Chief Executive Powers - Corrective Services Act 2006 (in-confidence)
A prisoner who is being transferred or who will be accommodated in another corrective services facility must be provided with enough medication and/or other treatment to last until the prisoner's medication can be reviewed at the receiving facility. Medications and medical aids must accompany a prisoner to ensure continuity of treatments.
If a prisoner is transferred-
If a prisoner is on an infrequently used medication the remainder of the prescription should be forwarded with the prisoner. If this is impracticable then a fortnight's supply should accompany the prisoner to allow time for the receiving facility to obtain a supply of medication and maintain continuity.
When transferring prisoners, the following Queensland Health forms (if relevant) should accompany the medication to allow the prisoner to receive medication when required-
The health services staff at the receiving facility must be notified of any relevant medical history as soon as possible.
Queensland Health is responsible for prisoner medical records and files and these records should wherever possible move with the prisoner when transferred. However, if the records are unavailable at the time of escort, Queensland Health must make other arrangements to provide them. The escort and transfer of the prisoner will proceed with Queensland Health taking responsibility for the timely and appropriate movement of the medical records.
If a prisoner is transferring to another corrective services facility to attend medical appointments, administrative form - Sentence Management Notification of Medical Appointment must be completed and forwarded to sentence management.
The corrective services officer escorting the prisoner to Helana Jones Centre must be given a completed administrative form - Health Transfer - Community, which must be given to the Manager, Helana Jones Centre.
If a prisoner attends the AMU for outpatient assessment, the facility medical chart must accompany the prisoner. This assists the visiting doctors when complex antiviral treatment regimes are being instituted. The medical chart must be sealed in an envelope and given to the escorting corrective services officer. It must accompany the prisoner on return to the referring corrective services facility and be given to the health centre staff.
All transfers must be approved by the delegate.
The Deputy Commissioner, Custodial Operations or the General Manager, Custodial Operations are the arbitrators for all disputes between general managers of corrective services facilities arising from the proposed transfer of a prisoner.
Refer CSA s. 68; Instrument of Delegation of Chief Executive Powers - Corrective Services Act 2006 (in-confidence) and Instrument of Limitation of Corrective Services Officers' Powers (in-confidence)
The delegate may allow a prisoner additional personal visits prior to transfer as circumstances permit.
Refer CSA s. 153; Instrument of Delegation of Chief Executive Powers - Corrective Services Act 2006 (in-confidence)
A prisoner convicted of a sexual offence listed in CSA, Schedule 1 who is accommodated in a high security facility must not be transferred to a low security facility, regardless of whether the prisoner is classified low security.
Prisoners who are assessed as suitable to transfer to a low security facility should be encouraged to transfer.
Any transfer of a prisoner sentenced under the Dangerous Prisoners (Sexual Offenders) Act 2003 (DPSOA) or a prisoner who is being considered under the DPSOA, must be brought to the attention of the High Risk Offender Management Unit (HROMU). Prior to transfer, notification must be sent to HROMU@dcs.qld.gov.au.
When a prisoner is transferred between high security facilities or from a low security facility to a high security facility following a significant event, excluding-
the receiving facility must review the prisoner's placement and classification within four weeks of the transfer (Inter-regional involuntary transfers must receive further periodic reviews, refer to section 2.6 of this procedure). It must be considered whether an event based review is required.
The prisoner must be provided an opportunity to submit any relevant information to the delegate that must be considered as part of the review process.
Refer procedure - Review
Upon completion of the automatic review of a transfer, a prisoner may request that the delegate reconsider the transfer.
A prisoner may request a reconsideration of a decision made in relation to his/her placement. A request for reconsideration must be made on the administrative form - Transfer Reconsideration Request within seven days after the prisoner is given notice of the decision.
Refer CSA s. 71; Instrument of Delegation of Chief Executive Powers - Corrective Services Act 2006 (in-confidence); Instrument of Limitation of Corrective Services Officers' Powers (in-confidence)
A transfer reconsideration may be requested for reasons that include-
The reconsideration of the transfer decision must be completed within a period of 28 days of receipt of the prisoner's request for reconsideration. Consideration must be given to all material used in the original decision and any additional information provided by the prisoner. The decision must be conveyed to the prisoner on the administrative form - Notice of Decision on Transfer Reconsideration.
An involuntary inter-regional transfer must not proceed until the reconsideration process is complete (refer to section 2.6 of this procedure).
All other involuntary transfers should proceed irrespective of the status of a request for reconsideration. If the transfer decision is cancelled the prisoner must, subject to vacancies, be returned to a corrective services facility-
The Transfer Summary must be generated from IOMS prior to a prisoner's transfer to ensure that any element of risk requiring the immediate attention of the transporting officer or receiving facility is highlighted and actioned.
The general manager of the sending corrective services facility must ensure-
A corrective services officer or a police officer must escort a prisoner on transfer.
Refer CSA s. 68(3); and procedure - Escort of Offenders (in-confidence)
All transport details must be entered on IOMS. Escorts must be timed to depart the sending facility and arrive at the receiving facility within a reasonable time frame.
Officers responsible for the transport and escort of a prisoner must check the Transfer Summary accompanying the prisoner and ensure that necessary precautions are taken while the prisoner is in their care. A current intelligence profile must be provided to the escort officers for a prisoner identified as a security risk.
If a break in transit occurs, including an overnight stay, the officers responsible for the transport and escort of a prisoner must bring the Transfer Summary and any intelligence profile for identified risk prisoners to the attention of staff at the transit facility.
The officer receiving a prisoner must have regard to the Transfer Summary and immediately notify the general manager of the corrective services facility if immediate attention is required or a referral is necessary. A check of IOMS should be conducted to identify any approved special dietary requirements and this information forwarded to the food services supervisor/manager. There is no requirement for a receiving centre to reassess a prisoner for special dietary needs upon reception.
For prisoners received at a high security facility, a psychologist or registered nurse must interview the prisoner prior to placement in an accommodation unit or cluster. At a minimum the interview must assess the prisoner's individual risk (self harm/suicide) and immediate individual needs. Reference must be made to the prisoners Immediate Risk Needs Assessment (IRNA) for the current episode when completing the assessment. Refer to procedure - At-Risk Management (Self Harm/Suicide).
For prisoners received at a low security facility, a psychologist or registered nurse should conduct the interview and assessment prior to the prisoner's placement. In situations when this may not be facilitated (eg unavailability of a psychologist or registered nurse) the general manager must nominate a staff member to be responsible for completing the interview and assessment.
If a prisoner is received after hours the duty manager, in consultation with a registered nurse, if available, is the initial contact for a prisoner requiring immediate attention.
A prisoner considered to be at-risk must be managed according to procedure - At-Risk Management (Self Harm/Suicide).
All actions undertaken, including referrals generated from the Transfer Summary or interview and assessment of the prisoner at the receiving facility must be recorded on IOMS. If the prisoner is not considered to present with at-risk indicators, the information must be recorded as a case note. If a prisoner is assessed as at-risk, a new Notification of Concern - Initial Assessment - Initial Response Plan (NOC - IA - IRP) must be entered.
A case note may be entered in IOMS by selecting the Offender > File Contents > Offender Management > Case File > Case Notes > Actions > Add New Case Note.
A new NOC - IA - IRP may be entered in IOMS by selecting the Offender > File Contents > Offender Management > Self Harm > Actions > New NOC - IA - IRP.
Some low security facilities accommodate prisoners who have been granted a work order.
Refer standard operating procedure - Work Program - Work Order Assessment and Approval
For hospital admissions, refer procedure - Admission to External Medical Facilities
All emergency medical transfers should be made by Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) to the hospital. All prisoners requiring QAS transport must have a completed administrative form - Facility to Hospital Transfer via QAS and provide it to the attending QAS officer. A copy of this form must be placed in the prisoner's medical file.
For Maximum Security Unit prisoners, refer standard operating procedures - Maximum Security Units (in-confidence) - Prisoner Management; Maximum Security Units (in-confidence) - Security Management
All seriously ill or injured prisoners must be taken to the local hospital.
Scheduled appointments at external health facilities must be forwarded to the appropriate staff in the facility by health services staff.
For scheduled appointments requiring movement to another facility for temporary accommodation, an administrative form - Sentence Management Notification of Medical Appointment must be completed and forwarded to sentence management.
If a prisoner is transferred to court, corrective services facilities must ensure that sufficient medication and information accompanies the prisoner to enable his/her health needs to be managed (refer Health (Drugs and Poisons) Regulation 1996, ss. 4(4), 85 and procedure - Pharmaceuticals). Police and Government Medical Officers generally undertake such management.
Unused medication must be returned with the prisoner to the relevant corrective services facility.
A copy of the medication chart, a completed administrative form - Prisoner Medication and two days supply of dispensed medication should accompany prisoners. A brief health summary should be completed and placed in a sealed envelope addressed to the Government Medical Officer.
The above section 6.1 is applicable, except that a minimum of five days supply of dispensed medication must accompany prisoners.
When a prisoner transfers from a corrective services facility to community supervision, the sending location must-
Refer procedures - Admission; Exit; Property of Offenders; Child Protection - Reportable Offenders; Payments to Prisoners on Discharge; Prisoner Monies; Dangerous Prisoners (Sexual Offenders) Act Orders (in-confidence); administrative forms - Acknowledgement Sheet; Application for Issue of Travel Voucher (in-confidence)
When the Transfer Summary is finalised, relevant non-electronic documentation must be placed on the offender file for transfer to the relevant district office.
An offender may be transferred from community supervision to a corrective services facility for a number of reasons including-
Refer procedures - Incident Reporting; Parole Orders and Resettlement Leave Program; Dangerous Prisoners (Sexual Offenders) Act Orders (in-confidence); Warrants; Compliance Management - Community Supervision (in-confidence)
When an offender transfers from community supervision to a custodial facility the prisoner must be assessed according to procedure - Assessment.
The file must be received by the receiving facility within one working day of the prisoner transferring. The receiving facility may request the file, if the file-
A prisoner may make an application to transfer from Queensland to another state for welfare reasons by completing administrative form Transfer to a Participating State at Request of Prisoner for Welfare Reasons. The completed form is to be forwarded to the sentence management team at the facility. A staff member must then complete administrative form Interstate Transfer Assessment Profile. Both original forms and required attachments are to be forwarded to the State Coordinator Prisoner Transfers.
For factors that must be considered when assessing a transfer request by a prisoner to transfer to another state from Queensland from for welfare reasons, refer appendix Considerations for a Prisoner Transferring from Queensland to Another State.
A prisoner may make an application to transfer from Queensland to another state for legal reasons by completing administrative form Transfer to a Participating State at Request of Prisoner for Legal Reasons. The completed form is to be forwarded to the sentence management team at the facility. A staff member must then complete administrative form Interstate Transfer Assessment Profile. Both original forms and required attachments are to be forwarded to the State Coordinator Prisoner Transfers who will ensure all required information has been completed and then on forward the application to the Attorney-General.
Executive Director, Offender Intervention Services
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