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									                                     CONCEPT DOCUMENT ON CENTRES OF EXCELLENCE


The Department of Correctional Services has identified Correctional Centres across various Regions to serve
as Centres of Excellence where an environment will be created for the provision of holistic integrated
programmes and services to the offender in order to produce socially responsible individuals. In a Centre of
Excellence, the Department is committed to the adequate provision of all correctional programmes and
services directed at the offender.

Subsequently, the following Concept Document on Centres of Excellence was drafted, unpacking the concept
of Centres of Excellence into key components like the purpose of the correctional system, service range,
offender assessment, profiling, sentence planning, the design, development and provisioning of needs based
programmes targeting offending behavior in the form of an integrated service system for correctional services.


2.1 Purpose of the Correctional System

The purpose of the correctional system is to contribute to maintaining and protecting a just, peaceful and safe
society by-

      (a)         enforcing sentences of the courts in the manner prescribed by the Act;
      (b)         detaining all prisoners in safe custody whilst ensuring their human dignity; and
      (c)         promoting the social responsibility and human development of all prisoners and persons subject
                  to community corrections.

      Subsection (C) of the Act makes provision for the promotion of social responsibility and humane detention
      of all prisoners and persons subjected to community corrections. It addresses the rendering of treatment
      and rehabilitation services aimed at the correction of the offender in order to prepare the offender for the
      successful return to society.

2.2 Context of the Correctional Services Mandate

The function of safe custody to protect the public makes the Department of Correctional Services a state
security institution. The promotion of social responsibility and human development position the Department of
Correctional Services both as a social development and correctional institution.

2.3 What is a centre of excellence?

A Centre of Excellence can be described as a Correctional Centre where all services, programmes, resources
and human potential and capital are directed at providing a place of new beginnings for each and every
offender, a place where every member is motivated, resourced, skilled, developed and supported to become
a rehabilitator.

The centre of excellence concept is an attempt to create an environment that helps in providing holistic
integrated services to the offender to produce a socially responsible person. The Department of Correctional
Services (DCS) seeks to eliminate in these centres overcrowding as an inhibitor of effective service provision
to the offender. The DCS also seeks to guarantee the existence of competent personnel to provide the range
of services that have to be delivered to an offender.

In essence, the centre of excellence concept represents the fundamental starting phase in which the end
objective is to transform all South Africa's Correctional Centres into effective Rehabilitation-Centred
institutions. The Department intends achieving this through a systematic process to successfully pilot (and
then translate) the prescripts and ideals of the White Paper on Corrections into sustainable practice in
selected centres through the creation of conducive correctional environments, which are characterized by the:

     Provision of holistic, integrated and needs-based services to offenders within needs-driven facilities
      aimed at producing socially responsible persons;

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     Effective management and control over all critical challenges that could have a significant impact on
     Presence of competent Rehabilitation- orientated personnel who are recruited, trained, retrained and
      developed in the "Ideal Correctional Official";
     Meaningful support for its overall Corrections-mandate from highly functional external partnerships with
      families, communities and society at large


In an Ideal Centre of Excellence the ideals of the White Paper will only be achieved in measurable and
sustainable fashion if the following aspects are in place:

3.1 Integrated Offender Management System

A centre of excellence must be run on unit management principles to enable adequate attention to each
offender. Every centre of excellence must have a structured day programme to account for daily activities and
every inmate in a centre of excellence must have a correctional sentence plan. In an ideal centre of
excellence there must be an appropriately staffed and trained Case Management Committees that must also
serve as a correction intervention team. The identity, roles and performance levels of external service
providers must be clearly related to the service delivery areas and philosophy of the DCS.

3.2 Comprehensive Offender Assessment & Risk Profiling

Assessment of why offences may have occurred and what problem areas, needs and/or risks must be dealt
with during intervention. Assessment guides intervention and tells you what you need to know to help and
manage the offender effectively both in a correctional centre –and community corrections setting. Without
accurate assessment, you are left to fumble around using trial and error until you find an effective method of
helping and managing the offender. The following aspects forms part of the admission assessment:

a) An assessment of risk level, for the purposes of security classification
b) Risk of self-harm and harm of others
c) Offence-specific (correcting offending behavior) and offence-related (providing care and development)
   program needs,
d) Readiness-to-change in terms of motivation to engage in programs,
e) Any special needs e.g. medical, dietary, etc.
f) An initial Exit Plan focused on needs upon release and social integration services

3.3 Provision of Needs-based Rehabilitation Programmes / Services

Factors associated with offending behavior must be targeted through needs-based rehabilitation programmes
and services delivered in a holistic and integrated fashion. Programmes and services can be unpacked in
offence-specific and offence-related programmes and/or services:

     Offence-specific programs that address offending needs and risks like violent offending, sexual
      offending, and drug and alcohol programs in order to deal with offences committed, offences suffered and
      harmful addictions
     Offence-related programs address areas related to offending like family support, harm from drug use,
      accommodation needs, development, care, education and employment as well as sports and recreation

3.4 Value & Integrity Driven Staff

The ideal correctional official should embody the values that the DCS hopes to instil in the correctional client,
as it is this member who is to assist and facilitate the rehabilitation processes of the correctional clients. An
attitude of serving with excellence, a principled way of relating to others and above all a just and caring
attitude are essential ingredients of the behaviour of a correctional official.

The desire to achieve a level of excellence in any field through self and team development; desire to
encourage a focus on productivity and efficiency through the implementation of best work methods,
procedures and systems in order to lead to efficiency in service delivery; to recognise the need to take
responsibility for assigned tasks and the be accountable for one’s own omissions or actions; the appreciation

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of security through vigilance of the need for ensuring the safety of employees, correctional clients and the
community should inform the competencies of the ideal correctional official.

The Department has asserted that “every member is a rehabilitator” and shown that the manner in which each
and every staff member performs his or her task either contributes to creating a rehabilitation-encouraging
environment or militates against rehabilitation and the correction of offending behaviour.

Staff who interact with the correctional clients must treat them with decency, humanity and fairness, ensure
that all correctional clients are safe, ensure that dangerous individuals do not escape, ensure good order and
control in correctional centres and provide correctional clients with opportunities to use the time that they are
incarcerated positively so that they will be able to reintegrate into their communities when they are released.

The history of the Department has not trained correctional officials in this practice, and as a result the
Department faces a major challenge to retrain the members in the new paradigm of rehabilitation through
correction and development in a secure, safe and humane environment.

Employees in a centre of excellence must undergo a compulsory security or integrity vetting, must match
appropriate job requirements and be socially responsible.

3.5 Excellent Human Resourcing

The structure of an ideal correctional centre of excellence must be characterised by:

(a)         The filling of all vacant posts within three months of them becoming vacant;
(b)         The existence of performance contracts and job descriptions for all employees;
(c)         existence of accurate records on management of inmate complaints and requests;
(d)         Effective management of relations with service providers.

3.6 Partnership with the Community

The rehabilitation of offenders can only be truly successful and their reintegration into the society meaningful,
if all stakeholders are allowed to participate in the process. To this effect the participation of the community in
strengthening and enhancing rehabilitation is crucial. The needs of the Department shall have to be marketed
to the community so as to enable it to know what expertise and services it can provide. An environment that
encourages and promotes the participation of community-based service providers must be created. Entry into
the Department for purposes of rendering services must be regulated yet made easy. Structures that facilitate
ease of access into the Department need to be put in place.


The above mentioned ideals will only be achieved if the DCS is committed at all levels to aggressively put the
following services, programmes and resources in place:

4.1 Offender Services

In a centre of excellence the DCS is committed to adequate provision of all the services – mandatory or
optional, directed at the offender. These services range from security, development, care, correction, facilities
and after care.

Each offender under correction receives a correctional sentence plan that explains how to deal with and help
the person from admission through his/her sentence period to release back into the community. The
information gathered from the admission assessment is used to design the following components that form
part of the sentence plan:

a) Security Plan: based on the offender’s security classification and risk profile (self harm/ harm of others) a
   security management plan is developed to facilitate a safe and stable environment which will support
   humane incarceration and rehabilitation of offenders.
b) Correction Plan: based on the offender’s offence-specific needs, a correction plan that target offending
   needs and risks e.g. sexual aggression, violence, and drug and alcohol-related offending is developed

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c) Care Plan: based on the offender’s offence-related needs, a care plan that target offender well-being
   e.g. physical fitness, nutrition, family support, spiritual and psychological well-being is developed
d) Development Plan: based on the offender’s developmental needs, a development plan that address
   offender development e.g. vocational and technical training, education, recreation, sports and
   employment skills is developed
e) Facilities Plan: based on the offender’s housing/facilities needs, a facilities plan that address prison
   construction, the nature and number of facilities required, and the types of services to be made available
   within such facilities is developed. Knowing the types of offenders to be housed or accommodated and
   whether sufficient facilities exist for their particular needs is an important consideration for DCS
f) After Care Plan: based on the offender’s reintegration/after release needs, an after care plan that
   support pre-release for prisoners (re-integration) and post-release / community-based support (aftercare)
   for offenders through the expansion of partnerships with NGO’s, CBO’s to facilitate social acceptance &
   curb re-offending

4.2 DCS Personnel Services

The DCS is also committed to professional management of employees in a centre of excellence. This
professional management ranges from recruitment, maintenance, supervision, training and exit management.
A professional Human Resource management approach will consist of the:

4.2.1 Provision of new personnel based on:

     appointment-criteria consistent with the "Ideal Correctional Official Model";
     a sound and balanced staff-offender ratio emanating from international best practice and a long-term
      departmental staffing strategy based on UNIT MANAGEMENT PRINCIPLES;
     a thorough analysis of departmental needs with regard to the different categories required for the range of
     a perceived higher (changed) societal status of the job and role of correctional officials

4.2.2 Maintenance & supervision of personnel in line with the objective of:

     The "Ideal Correctional Official Model";
     "Every member is a rehabilitator", demanding a high level of cooperation between custodial officials and
      those officials professionally trained (social workers, psychologists, etc.);
     Creating an ethically-centred environment characterized by a zero tolerance for corruption, mal-
      administration and general misconduct and which is enforced by an effective Disciplinary Code and
      Disciplinary Procedures;
     Constantly revitalizing and sustaining the Departmental Core Values; and
     Of fostering a Socio-security Orientation through balancing security and Correction.
     A pro-active exit management strategy guaranteeing the sufficient and constant availability of all
      categories of staff.

4.2.3 Training, retraining and development of personnel based on:

     Developing & sustaining of skills and knowledge consistent with the "Ideal Correctional Official Model" &
      "Every member is a rehabilitator";
     Specialist and functional training for differentiated groups and levels of employees, in line with best
     Realistic and effective Career Path.

4.3 Management of Offenders

Management of offenders in a centre of excellence must consist of:

(a)         clearly defined admission activities;
(b)         induction of offenders;
(c)         in-depth profiling of each offender;
(d)         security risk rating of each offender;
(e)         determination of a sentence plan for each offender

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(f)         participation in official personal correction interventions;
(g)         behaviour modelling – participation in development and care activities as part of sentence plan;
(h)         formal evaluation of offender in relation to social responsibility, taking into account the court sentence,
            participation in personal correction interventions, and participation in development and care activities;
(i)         After Care: Offender in a centre of excellence must benefit from pre-release programmes to prepare
            them for parole. It is also vital for the DCS to take measures to minimise hurdles to effective
            integration to communities of graduates of a centre of excellence, who shall have gone through
            official DCS correction programmes and formally considered by the DCS to be socially responsible.

4.4 Management of External Role Players

The DCS wants to see relations with all external stake holders managed in a professional manner. In the case
of service providers, the DCS wants to see to it that every service provider is seen to be providing a service
that can be related to one or more of the DCS recognised budget programmes. Such services have to be
provided at agreed levels and must be seen to be furthering the strategic goals of the DCS and where
applicable must be seen to be full value for money.

Some of the above mentioned key external relationships that must be cultivated at centres of excellence are
discussed next:

4.4.1 Families

The content of the relationship that needs proper management, are:

     Visits and communication with inmates in Centres (Care Programme)
     Participation in Community Forums, e.g. the Integrated Support System;
     Security (protection against inmates as part of the community)

4.4.2 Communities

The content of the relationship that needs formal arrangements (to be consolidated in a Community
Participation Policy), are:

     Participation in community forums, e.g. the Community and Parole Boards, Integrated Support System,
      Community Consultative Forum, etc.;
     Provision of Service/ programmes by Service providers: Services provided should be related to one or
      more of the DCS recognised budget programmes. Such services have to be provided at agreed levels
      and must be seen to be furthering the strategic goals of the DCS and where applicable must be seen to
      be full value for money.
     Healing the broken relationship between victim (as part of the community), the community itself and the
     Participation of community via accredited NGO, CBO and FBO programmes and services

4.4.3 Other Government Departments

Relations needing formal arrangements, are:

     Participation in community forums
     Collective and individual responsibility with regard to Corrections as Societal Responsibility
     Roles/ tasks in offender-profiling
     Roles/ tasks in relation to crime-prevention & broader safety & security matters.
     Cooperation with Institutions / Organisations at Local Government Level e.g. municipalities, forums
     Cooperation with Institutions / Organisations at Provincial and National Level e.g. Provincial Government
      Structures and Offices

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                                                  Approved 36 Centres of Excellence

The following table provides an indication as to where these centres are situated;

                         Regions                                                            Selected Sites

Western Cape                                                        Malmesbury Medium A Correctional Centre
                                                                    Goodwood Correctional Centre
                                                                    Dwarsrivier Correctional Centre
                                                                    Drakenstein Medium B Juvenile Correctional Centre
                                                                    Pollsmoor Female Correctional Centre
                                                                    Voorberg Medium B Correctional Centre (Blue Print)

Eastern Cape                                                        Cradock Correctional Centre
                                                                    Idutywa Correctional Centre
                                                                    Stutterheim Correctional Centre
                                                                    East London Medium C Correctional Centre (Blue Print)
                                                                    Kirkwood Correctional Centre
                                                                    Umtata Maximum Correctional Centre
                                                                    Queenstown Correctional Centre

KwaZulu/Natal                                                       Ebongweni Maximum Correctional Centre Kokstad
                                                                    Durban Juvenile Correctional Centre
                                                                    Durban Female Correctional Centre
                                                                    Pietermaritzburg Correctional Centre
                                                                    Ekuseni Youth Development Correctional Centre
                                                                    Empangeni Community Corrections (Blue Print)
Free State & Northern Cape                                          Groenpunt Juvenile Correctional Centre(Blue Print)
                                                                    Goedemoed Medium A Correctional Centre
                                                                    Douglas Correctional Centre
                                                                    Sasolburg Correctional Centre
                                                                    Kroonstad Medium C
                                                                    Kuruman Correctional Centre
Mpumalanga, Limpopo & North West                                    Middelburg Correctional Centre
                                                                    Ermelo Correctional Centre
                                                                    Rustenburg Juvenile Correctional Centre
                                                                    Makhado Correctional Centre
                                                                    Klerksdorp Correctional Centre(Blue Print)
                                                                    Modimolle Correctional Centre
Gauteng                                                             Emthonjeni Juvenile Correctional Centre (Bavianspoort)
                                                                    Leeuwkop Juvenile Correctional Centre
                                                                    Johannesburg Medium Correctional Centre
                                                                    Johannesburg Female Correctional Centre
                                                                    Pretoria Central Correctional Centre(Blue Print)

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