In conversation with Victorian Ombudsman Deborah Glass

In conversation with Victorian Ombudsman Deborah Glass

Monday, 6 August 2018

Victorian Ombudsman Deborah Glass joined us at our recent Criminal Connections learning forum, speaking about key issues in the criminal justice system with our Chief Counsel Tim Marsh.

The discussion focussed on the Ombudsman’s investigations into the rehabilitation and reintegration of prisoners in Victoria, and the issue of rising prison populations, particularly women.

The Victorian Ombudsman’s 2015 report: Investigation in the rehabilitation and reintegration of prisoners in Victoria, identified gaps in the system, particularly in its capacity to address the root causes of offending and reduce recidivism.

Deborah spoke of the need for long-term solutions to reduce reoffending and the importance of learning from other jurisdictions.

‘It takes a degree of vision to get real, long-term traction,’ Deborah said.

Deborah also discussed the value of investing in programs that focus on diversion and rehabilitation and highlighted the value of family connections to support the reintegration of prisoners to the community.  

The specific needs of women prisoners were also a key feature of the discussion. The 2015 report showed that significantly high numbers of female prisoners are victims of sexual, physical or emotional abuse. At the forum Deborah highlighted the importance of addressing women’s specific needs in the justice system through tailored, therapeutic approaches.  

Tim and Deborah also discussed the valuable role of story-telling to educate and raise awareness about why long-term and sustainable approaches to reduce offending will provide better outcomes for vulnerable people, and the community as a whole.

Read the report

Read the Ombudsman’s 2015 report Investigation into the rehabilitation and reintegration of prisoners in Victoria.

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