3 September 2018
The Post Sentence Authority is now responsible for monitoring and reviewing serious violent offenders who are subject to ongoing detention and supervision.
Previously, the Authority only monitored serious sex offenders, but changes introduced by the Serious Offenders Act 2018 strengthen and expand the post sentence scheme. Under these new changes, the courts can require the ongoing supervision or detention of offenders who have committed either sexual or violent offences, and continue to pose an unacceptable risk to the community at the conclusion of their prison sentence.
The Authority will monitor and review these offenders and ensure that government agencies deliver coordinated services that will aid their treatment and rehabilitation. These offenders have complex needs, and the Authority will provide the same level of rigorous oversight that we currently apply to serious sex offenders under our supervision.
The expansion of the scheme enhances community protection by providing for the ongoing detention and supervision of high risk offenders, regardless of whether offenders pose a risk of sexual or violent offending.
The changes also introduce new Emergency Detention Orders. These orders can be made by the Supreme Court and allow for an offender subject to a supervision order to be detained for up to seven days if they pose an imminent risk of committing a serious sexual or violent offence.
A new 20 bed facility is being built near Hopkins Correctional Centre, which is specifically designed to provide intensive treatment and intervention to offenders in a therapeutic environment. The courts can require offenders to reside at this facility so that they receive treatment that helps to reduce the risks of re-offending.
These changes have been introduced in response to recommendations made in the Harper Review which found that the post sentence scheme should be expanded to include serious violent offenders, to enhance community protection against both serious sexual and violent offenders.