Our Services

Arrangements for public contribution and/or participation in policy formulation

Generally, memb​ers of the public can contribute and/or participate in policy formulation by writing to the Commissioner to make suggestions, or raise issues that they feel are of concern to them or to the public at large. This may also be done via the Contact Us page on this website.

Corrective Services NSW (CSNSW) has a number of arrangements that enable members of the public to contribute or participate directly in the formulation of the organisation's policies or decisions. These arrangements are outlined below.

Official Visitors

Official Visitors are appointed by the Minister for Justice. Advertisements are placed in major metropolitan and regional newspapers, as well as some community newspapers, inviting interested people to apply to be appointed as an Official Visitor. Successful applicants are assigned to visit specific correctional facilities on a regular basis.

Official Visitors are independent of CSNSW. Their role is to assist to resolve inquires and complaints from inmates and staff at the local level.

Official Visitors report to the Minister half yearly, and to the Commissioner quarterly, on the types of inquiries and complaints they have received, and any issues of concern.

Community Consultative Committees

Community Consultative Committees are formed in areas where correctional centres are located. A typical Community Consultative Committee is comprised of the general manager of the correctional centre, the manager of the local Community Offender Services (COS) District Office and representatives from:

  • the Magistracy;
  • courts administration;
  • the relevant local council;
  • police;
  • local hospital;
  • local industry;
  • other local organisations.

For further details and advice on how to become a member, contact the general manager of the relevant correctional centre.

Correctional Industries Consultative Council of NSW

The Correctional Industries Consultative Council of NSW acts as a link between Corrective Services Industries and the private sector. The Council consists of representatives from:

  • industry groups;
  • Unions NSW;
  • community representatives.

For further details and advice on how to become a member, contact the Executive Director, Corrective Services Industries on (02) 8346 1601.

Serious Offenders Review Council and State Parole Authority

Community representatives sit on both the Serious Offenders Review Council (SORC) and the State Parole Authority (SPA). On the recommendation of the Minister for Justice, the Governor of New South Wales appoints these representatives for fixed terms not exceeding three years.

Victims Register

Victims of serious offenders, who are on the CSNSW Victims Register are entitled to request access to certain information held by the State Parole Authority, and to make written and oral submissions concerning the granting of parole to the serious offender.

For further details contact the Co-ordinator, Victims Register on (02) 8346 1374.

Public participation in independent associations

The Community Restorative Centre and SHINE for Kids are community organisations that provide support and assistance to offenders and their families. Membership of these organisations is open to any person over 18 years of age.

These organisations operate independently of CSNSW, however, they receive some funding from CSNSW to assist with their administration costs.

Description of the kinds of records held by Corrective Services NSW

Policies and procedures

CSNSW has developed policies and procedures on a range of issues that affect the public, including offenders. Generally, policies and procedures, other than those on this website, have to be applied for under the GIPA Act.

Reports

CSNSW publishes various reports concerning its administration and operations. The Corporate Research, Evaluation and Statistics Unit publishes a significant number of reports, many of which are directly available to the public. Some reports have to be applied for under the GIPA Act.

The Department of Attorney General and Justice (DAGJ) Annual Report is published in accordance with statutory requirements. DAGJ Annual Reports are not for sale but relevant DAGJ, Corrective Services NSW and the former Department of Corrective Services annual reports may be accessed freely on this website. Annual Reports are also available from the Brush Farm Corrective Services Academy Library.

Instructions and memoranda

Commissioner's Instructions and Commissioner's Memoranda are issued on a range of topics relating to the operations and administration of CSNSW. Each document is given an identification number based on the year it was issued.

Commissioner's Instructions amount to lawful orders to staff with respect to the management and control of CSNSW. Commissioner's Memoranda are general communications to staff.

The Deputy Commissioner Offender Management and Operations issues information, instructions and procedures known as Deputy Commissioner's Memoranda and Changes to the Operations Procedures Manual (COPM). Each document is given an identification number based on the year it was issued.

Memoranda are also issued by the Deputy Commissioner Corporate Services (DCCS).

Corrective Services NSW Bulletin

The Corrective Services NSW Bulletin (The Bulletin) is generally published monthly under the authority of the Commissioner. The Bulletin covers procedural matters, policy directives and general information.

Files

Listed below are some of the files created by CSNSW officers. Most require a formal GIPA Act application to access.

File typeContents of file
AssessmentInformation about an offender prepared by Community Offender Services.
Case managementInformation about an offender's case management, and participation in services and programs.
EmployerInformation about employers participating in the inmate work release program.
High security inmate managementInformation about an inmate managed by the High Security Inmate Management Committee of the SORC.
OffenderInformation about an offender/inmate usually in relation to correspondence between the offender/inmate and CSNSW.
Part-time teacherInformation about a part-time teacher working for CSNSW.
PersonalInformation about an employee prepared by CSNSW staff concerning personnel matters.  If it is your file, it must be obtained by contacting the Human Resources Division.
PsychologyInformation about an inmate prepared by a CSNSW psychologist.
SupervisionInformation about an offender prepared by Probation and Parole officers.
WarrantInformation about an inmate - e.g., warrants, court appearances.

CSNSW does not possess files containing an inmate's complete medical records. Justice Health is responsible for providing medical services to inmates and maintains its own records. Justice Health is a statutory health corporation established under the Health Services Act 1997 and is funded by NSW Health. Justice Health can be contacted on (02) 9289 5168.

Brochures, booklets and videos

CSNSW produces material on a range of aspects of its operations. Examples of these are:

  • Corporate Communications Plan
  • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity;
  • Facts and Figures;
  • Brush Farm Corrective Services Academy Course Handbook;
  • Travel and Accommodation Assistance for Families of Inmates;
  • Visiting a Correctional Centre;
  • Victims Register Brochure (in English, Arabic, Spanish, Chinese and Vietnamese);
  • Restorative Justice for Victims of Crime - DVD

Some of these publications are available on this website or by contacting CSNSW.

Databases

CSNSW maintains various databases such as the Offender Integrated Management System (OIMS). Further details regarding databases are provided in the CSNSW Privacy Management Plan.

Registers

CSNSW maintains the Victims Register​ and a register of Memoranda of Understanding between CSNSW and other agencies.

Personal information held by CSNSW

Section 13 of the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 requires an agency to take reasonable steps to enable a person to ascertain whether the agency holds personal information and whether the agency holds personal information relating to that person. If an agency holds personal information relating to that person, it must enable that person to ascertain the nature of that information, and main purposes for which the information is used, and that person's entitlement to gain access to the information.

Clause 6(1) of Schedule 1 to the Health Records and Information Privacy Act 2002 requires an agency to take reasonable steps to enable a person to ascertain whether the agency holds health information and whether the agency holds health information relating to that person. If an agency holds health information relating to that person, it must enable that person to ascertain the nature of that information, and main purposes for which the information is used, and that person's entitlement to request access to the information.

CSNSW holds personal information (which may in some cases include health information) about:

  • current and former inmates, offenders, and detainees
  • some of the family members and friends of current and former inmates, offenders, and detainees
  • visitors to correctional centres
  • persons who sponsor or employ inmates on work release and other external leave programs
  • staff and former staff of CSNSW
  • victims of crime.

Strategic Records

The following is a list of strategic records published by CSNSW:

  • Corporate Plan
  • Human Resources Strategic Plan
  • Corporate Communications Plan
  • Environment​ Management Plan
  • Throug​hcar​e Strategy ​