TALKS are underway about the feasibility of a supervised workforce of low risk prisoners from Fulham Correctional Centre at Sale working on infrastructure projects in the community.
The State Government is keen to develop constructive ways to rehabilitate prisoners and at the same complete infrastructure projects in shires such as South Gippsland.
South Gippsland Shire Mayor Jim Fawcett said he has had talks with representatives of the GEO Group, which manages Fulham Prison on behalf of the Department of Corrections.
“The potential is positive for the esteem, skills and re-entry of prisoners into society and Council could benefit from the additional workforce and funding assistance to undertake some much-needed infrastructure projects across the shire,” said Cr Fawcett.
The discussions include the possibility of the prisoners staying in supervised accommodation in South Gippsland, so that they have only a short distance to travel to work each day.
“Agreements such as this have been undertaken before,” said Cr Fawcett, recalling the days when prisoners from the former Won Wron Prison regularly worked under supervision in the community. “Those experiences will be reviewed to once again ensure that there are no adverse impacts on the community and that the result is a win-win for everyone.”
In a similar development, Parks Victoria recently formed a partnership with the Wulgunggo Ngalu Learning Place (site of the former prison at Won Wron) which sees low risk offenders from the facility carrying out supervised maintenance at Agnes Falls Scenic Reserve.