5. Women in prison in Qld

5.1 Profile of women in prison in Queensland: who are they?

Women in prison are rarely considered by the greater population or given much media coverage. They are a small group of women whose existence and lives are largely invisible. Who they are, where they come from, and their lives prior to incarceration have been of little interest to others including most politicians, policy makers and prison administrators.

Because of their relatively small numbers and their invisibility within society, the needs and interests of women prisoners have only very recently started to be researched and considered. While the differing needs of male and female prisoners are receiving some formal recognition, addressing those differences in a correctional system primarily designed for men has been a slow process.

If the differences between female and male prisoners have been largely ignored by prison administrators until recently, then so have the unique needs of subgroups within both female and male prison populations. The needs and differences of Indigenous prisoners, prisoners with disabilities and particularly those with mental health or intellectual disabilities, and those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds are frequently forgotten or ignored in the design, administration and daily routines of the prison system.

The ADA requires that state government administrators, including the administrators of Queensland prisons, act to ensure they do not unlawfully discriminate by treating a prisoner less favourably than another prisoner on the basis of the prisoner's sex, relationship status, pregnancy, parental status, age, race, impairment religious belief, lawful sexual activity, gender identity, sexuality, or family responsibilities.[29] The ADA prohibits both direct and indirect discrimination.[30] Inflexible systems that do not adequately consider the differing needs of subgroups of prisoners may amount to indirect discrimination.[31]

Back to top


5.2 The number of women in Queensland prisons

Three hundred and sixty–one female prisoners were being held in secure and open custody in Queensland on 30 June 2005. [32] In Queensland, as in all Australian jurisdictions, the percentage of female offenders is low compared to the number of males. During the year 2004–05, women constituted just 6.7% of the total prison population in Queensland.

Incarceration is only one of many sentencing options available to the courts. Non–custodial sentencing, including community–based orders or fines, are more common penalties for both men and women.

Once sentenced to a term of imprisonment, prisoners are assigned a security classification, which in part determines where they may be detained. At 30 June 2005, 4235 men and 278 women were held in high security facilities, while 761 men and 83 women were detained in low security facilities in Queensland.[33]

Table 1: Prisoners by security classification as at 30 June 2005

Prisoners by security classification
Security
classification

Indig–
enous
MALE
Non Indig–
enous

Total

Indig–
enous
FEMALE
Non Indig–
enous

Total
TOTAL 
High security facilities        
High
459
1375
1834
40 80 120 1954
Medium
466
1210
1676
27 71 98 1774
Low
46
218
264
5 16 21 285
Open
72
243
315
5 17 22 337
Unclassified
42
104
146
6 11 17 163
Total
high security
1085
3150
4325
83
195
278
4513
Low security facilities        
Low
3
25
28
5 6 11 39
Open
148
585
733
8 64 72 805
Total
low security
151
610
761
13
70
83
844
TOTAL
1236
3760
4996
96
265
361
5357

Source : Department of Corrective Services Annual Report 2004–05 Table 4 page 45

Seventy–eight percent of female prisoners were detained in a secure facility, meaning a prison with a perimeter fence designed to prevent escape.[34] The remaining women were held in a low security facility. By way of comparison, 85% of male prisoners were held in a secure facility.

Queensland has one of the lowest levels of open custody facilities in Australia. The DCS has identified that in 2003–2004, the average daily proportion of prisoners accommodated in open custody in Queensland was 16.4% compared to a national average of 27.3%.[35]

Between 1998 and 2003, the female prison population in Queensland grew by about 20%. Across Australia, the number of female prisoners increased at a much higher rate than male prisoners.[36]

There are significant differences in offending patterns between male and female offenders. The major offences for which women are in prison are theft, in particular fraud and misappropriation (35.2%), homicide (16.01%), assault (18.8%) and drug offences (10%), with a small number of women imprisoned for sex offences. Fewer women than men are convicted of violent offences and women prisoners on average serve less time in custodial centres than their male counterparts.

Back to top


5.3 Characteristics of women prisoners in Queensland

Social Condition

Females entering prison commonly have combined disadvantages. These include low levels of education, limited employment skills and opportunities, poor housing, inadequate income and often backgrounds of childhood trauma and abuse. Many female offenders have never been employed, and more than half were unemployed at the time of incarceration. Most had left school by Grade 10 and had significantly lower literacy levels than the average Australian population. [37]

Age

The majority of female prisoners are between the ages of 20 and 39 (74%).

Table 2 : Prisoners by Indigenous status, age group and gender as at 30 June 2005

Prisoners by age, Indigenous status and gender
Age

Indig–
enous
MALE
Non Indig–
enous

Total

Indig–
enous
FEMALE
Non Indig–
enous

Total
TOTAL  % of
Total
17
15
14
29
1 0 1 30 1%
18–19
91
113
204
6 2 8 212 4%
20–24
286
566
852
20 44 64 916 17%
25–29
282
687
969
17 45 62 1031 19%
30–34
209
679
888
19 43 62 950 18%
35–39
160
510
670
16 48 64 734 14%
40–44
111
407
518
8 36 44 562 10%
45–49
49
300
349
7 16 23 372 7%
50–54
20
169
189
2 16 18 8207 4%
55+
13
315
328
0 15 15 343 6%
TOTAL
1236
3760
4996
96
265
361
5357
100%

Source : Department of Corrective Services Annual Report 2004–05 Table 3 page 45

The age profile of women in prison has implications for their health and well–being.

Unlike other state jurisdictions, in Queensland 17 year olds are held in adult prisons. Young women in the prison system can be more vulnerable than older women and have special needs.

The majority of women in prison are of child bearing age. Many are mothers and are often the primary or sole carer of children when they are imprisoned. Women prisoners' relationship with their children is a major issue for their health and well–being.

Older women also have specific health, psychological and emotional needs. Adapting to the rigorous physical environment of prison can present difficulties, as can adjusting to and coping with the institutional regimes of incarceration.

Back to top

Prisoners as mothers

A major issue for female prisoners is their role and responsibilities as mothers. There are very few Australian studies about the position and experiences of children with imprisoned parents, and a dearth of formal statistical evidence of children in custody.[38] The precise number of women in prison who are mothers, and the number of their dependent children, is unknown. In some situations, it has been reported that inmate mothers are sometimes reluctant to divulge the existence of children they may have for fear of losing them into care.[39]

A 1995 study found that more than 85% of female prisoners were mothers of young children and, prior to prison, were more often than not the heads of single households.[40] The social impacts of a young child with their primary care giving parent in prison should be of critical concern to government policy makers working in justice and child protection, and women's prison administrators.

Country of birth

Most women in Queensland prisons are born in Australia and the majority are white. There is a disproportionate number of Indigenous women in prison. In addition to Indigenous women, there is a small number of women in prison who come from a diversity of ethnic backgrounds. These women vary in their ability to speak English, which can impact on their ability to access and participate in prison programs, and understand and negotiate institutional regimes and requirements. It can also result in social isolation within prison as these women often lack family and the support networks available to others.

Table 3: Ethnic background of female offenders in secure and open custody as at 30 June 1999

Female prisoners by ethnic background
Ethnic background
of offender
Female 
Number
Female 
Percentage
Africa (inc. Libya, Egypt)
0
0.00%
Canada
0
0.00%
East Europe
3
1.10%
Greece
1
0.36%
Italy
2
0.73%
Lebanon
0
0.00%
New Zealand
17
6.23%
Other Americas
1
0.36%
Other Asia
6
2.20%
Other Indo China
0
0.00%
Other Middle East
0
0.00%
Other Oceania
1
0.36%
Other West Europe
4
1.47%
Papua New Guinea
2
.73%
Torres Strait Islander
2
.73%
Tribal Aboriginal
11
4.03%
UK and Ireland
6
2.20%
Urban Aboriginal/Islander
59
21.62%
USA
0
0.00%
Vietnam
4
1.47%
White Australian
148
54.21%
Yugoslavia
3
1.10%
Unknown/not stated/
not applicable
3
1.10%
TOTAL
273
100%

Source : Department of Corrective Services Women's Policy Unit 2000 Profile of Female Offenders Table 1.10 page 8.

Back to top

Indigenous women

Indigenous women (and Indigenous people in general) have an unacceptably high risk of being imprisoned in Queensland. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people represent less than 3% of the general population, yet make up 24.8% of the total prisoner population. At 30 June 2005, 26.58% of female prisoners in Queensland were Indigenous. In 2005 the percentage of Indigenous women in prison in Queensland was higher than the number of Indigenous men. [41]These figures are consistent with the Indigenous imprisonment rates in 2004.

Table 4: Summary of prisoners as at 30 June 2004 by Aboriginality

Prisoners by Indigenous status and custody type
Custody type
Indigenous
Males
% of all males
Indigenous Females % of all females Total Indigenous
% of all prisoners
Secure custody
980
23.7%
86 29.0% 1066 24.1%
Open custody
107
19.1%
13 31.0% 120 19.9%
Community custody
19
8.0%
0 0.0% 19 7.2%
Total
1106
22.4%
99 27.8% 1205 22.7%

Source : Department of Corrective Services Annual Report 2003–04 Table 2 page 39.

In the decade since the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody (RCIADIC), Queensland has recorded an increase in prison numbers of 116%.[42] During this time, incarceration rates for women have increased at a more rapid rate than men. The increase in imprisonment of Indigenous women has been greater over the period compared with other women.[43] In Queensland, the growth of Indigenous female offenders in secure and open custody over the five year period from 1994–1999 was 204% compared to 173% for all female offenders over the same period.[44]

Indigenous women are often in prison for relatively shorter sentences than non–Indigenous women. Recidivism statistics suggest that Indigenous women are at greater risk of returning to prison. In 1999, 53.3% of non–Indigenous women in prison in Queensland had been in prison before compared to 62.9% of Indigenous women.[45]

Indigenous women are vulnerable to similar health and well–being issues as other female prisoners in addition to having different cultural needs. As a disadvantaged minority group, Indigenous women almost universally have been subjected to social and economic hardship. Often they are imprisoned a long way from their homes and families, particularly women from north and central Queensland.

Back to top

Physical and mental health

Many women entering prison have a history of poor physical and mental health. The DCS conducted a health survey of female prisoners in 2002.[46] That survey found that:

  • the three major issues pertaining to the health of women in prisons were drug abuse, mental health and childhood sexual abuse;

  • 57.1% of women reported having been diagnosed with a specific mental illness, the most common being depression. 9% of female prisoners had been admitted to a psychiatric hospital and 17% had been prescribed counselling or treatment. Women prisoners have a much higher incidence of mental health problems than male prisoners[47];

  • more than a third of women consumed alcohol at hazardous or harmful levels prior to incarceration, with harmful drinking highest among Indigenous women from north Queensland;

  • half the women had a history of injecting drug use and 40% tested antibody positive to hepatitis C;

  • poor nutrition, low levels of exercise, unprotected sex, unplanned pregnancies, drug use and needle sharing were issues impacting on the health of many of the women entering the prison system.

Back to top

Intellectual disability

Little research has been done on women in prison with intellectual disability or other forms of cognitive or learning disability. Both Australian and overseas studies report over–representation of offenders with intellectual disability.[48] Australian research into the percentage of prisoners who have an intellectual disability varies. Victorian research estimates 3–4% of the prison population has an IQ below 69,[49] however, another study involving ex–prisoners in New South Wales indicates that nearly 30% had an intellectual disability.[50] The prevalence of intellectual disability in the general population is estimated to be 2–3%.

Women prisoners with intellectual disability are more likely than non–prisoners of similar socio–economic backgrounds to have concurrent problems such as alcohol or illicit drug abuse, self–harm and suicide, poor mental and physical health, and low levels of education.[51]

Some research indicates that women prisoners with intellectual disabilities are more likely than their male counterparts to have a psychiatric diagnosis.[52]

Back to top

Abuse

Many female prisoners have a history of sexual or physical abuse.

The Queensland Women Prisoners7#146; Health Survey found that:

  • 42.5% of women reported being the victim of non–consensual sexual activity before the age of 16;

  • 37.7% reported having been physically or emotionally abused before the age of 16; and

  • 36.5% experienced actual or attempted intercourse on one or more occasions before the age of 10.[53]

The likelihood of having been sexually abused is much higher for women prisoners than for other women. In a representative population survey, 8.8% of Queensland women aged 18 years or more have reported being the victim of rape or sexual assault.[54]

 Back to top


5.4 Corrective services facilities for women in Queensland

Queensland has four facilities for female prisoners. Historically female prisoners constitute a very small percentage of the total Queensland prison population (about 7%). Three of these facilities for women are located in South East Queensland with the fourth in Townsville. In contrast, there are 17 facilities for men located throughout the state. The following maps show the location of facilities for men and women in Queensland.

Male Correctional Facilities

Custodial Correctional Centres for men are located at:

  • Numinbah in South–East Queensland

  • Palen Creek in South–East Queensland

  • Brisbane in South–East Queensland

  • Darling Downs in South–East Queensland

  • Woodford in South–East Queensland

  • Maryborough in Central Queensland

  • Capricornia in Central Queensland

  • Townsville in North Queensland

  • Lotus Glen Mareeba in Far North Queensland

Community Custody Programs for men are located at:

  • West Brisbane in South–East Queensland

  • Ozcare in South–East Queensland

Work camps for men are located at 11 regional locations. [55]

 Back to top

Female Correctional Facilities

Custodial Correctional Centres for women are located at:

  • Numinbah in South–East Queensland

  • Brisbane in South–East Queensland

  • Townsville in North Queensland

Community Corrections Centres Programs for women are located at:

  • Warwick Showgrounds in South–East Queensland

Community Custody Programs for women are located at:

  • Helana Jones in South–East Queensland

One work camps for women prisoners is located at are located at Warwick Showgrounds.

Of the facilities available to women in August 2004, 14% are exclusively low or open custody [56] compared to 10.2% for male prisoners.[57]

 Back to top

Brisbane Women's Correctional Centre

The largest of the facilities for women is Brisbane Women's Correctional Centre (BWCC). This is a secure prison facility with a capacity to accommodate 270 women. Located on the outer western fringe of Brisbane, it is approximately 2.5 kilometres from the suburban train station of Wacol. [58]

BWCC was opened in 1999 replacing the old over–crowded women's prison at Boggo Road, Dutton Park in central Brisbane. The physical structures of BWCC are modern and contemporary, and have been purpose built as a women's prison. It contains a medical unit, an educational unit and library, a gymnasium, administration buildings, a visitors' area, and a number of large workshops that house prison industries. The BWCC perimeter is secured with high level security fences and razor wire.

BWCC is a prison for women who have been sentenced to a period of imprisonment after a full criminal hearing before a judge or magistrate. BWCC also accommodates women on remand, who are being held in custody until their trial, but are yet to be found guilty of a crime. Aside from the Townsville Correctional Centre, the BWCC is where all female prisoners are first sent when convicted.

Under federal legislation, BWCC at the time of commencement of the ADCQ's review into women in prison accommodated a number of women on behalf of the Commonwealth who were being detained or due to be deported as illegal immigrants.[59]

BWCC houses both mainstream and protected prisoners. About 10% of the total prison population are protected prisoners who are separated from other prisoners for a variety of reasons. These women are housed in another secure facility that is effectively a prison within a prison.

Like all other facilities for women, the BWCC houses female prisoners as young as 17 years. Children under the age of five often reside with their mothers who are serving time.

BWCC provides several types of accommodation for women prisoners:

  • Secure 6 (or S6) accommodation consists of four dormitory style units. Sixteen prisoners are housed in two of the units with 24 prisoners in each of the other two. The block has a protection unit containing 24 beds for inmates who need protection because of the nature of their crime, difficulties with other prisoners or their status as protected witnesses.

  • Secure 1 (or S1) is a block of four units. Three of these contain six smaller units each housing six prisoners. All newly–arrived prisoners and immigration detainees are initially placed in Secure 1 unless they are assessed as requiring additional protection for their own safety. Women inmates, who are housed in S1 or S6, are allowed limited private property, wear prison issued clothing, and are provided with plated meals that are prepared in the main kitchen of the facility.

  • A crisis support unit (known as CSU or S4) is a secure facility within S1. It provides low hazard containment for the protection and promotion of the health of prisoners identified as having intent to suicide or self–harm, or to harm others.[60] The CSU consists of a number of segregated cells surrounding a modest central common area, with a small caged exercise yard adjacent to the unit. The unit features a padded cell with restraining devices. The CSU is discussed in detail later in this report.

  • The other main accommodation in BWCC is residential housing units for 118 inmates. The units are clustered four to a block and house six prisoners per unit. Campus style, they consist of a communal living area, a separate cell for each inmate and access to a shared bathroom, kitchen and laundry. The individual cells in residential are larger than those in secure and inmates are permitted to have more private property than those in secure accommodation. Residents do their own cooking and share cleaning responsibilities.

  • A number of the residential units also accommodate a total of eight inmates who have their baby or young child residing with them in prison. Whether or not a young child resides with their mother, is determined by the person in charge of the prison facility, based on what is in the best interests of the child.[61] If the decision maker believes it is warranted, the decision as to where the child resides can be varied during the time the mother is in prison. Children who are five years or more are not permitted to reside in prison, as the facilities are deemed to be unsuitable for their needs. The children sleep in their mother's cell, which is large enough to accommodate a child's cot or bed. There is a small fenced playground with some climbing equipment adjoining the units, which is accessible during the day. Mothers and children also have access to a formal playgroup with skilled external facilitators attending once a week.

  • The prison has a detention unit (DU) that is separate from other accommodation in the prison. The DU is used for segregating prisoners for breaches of BWCC discipline [62] or where a special treatment order has been made for the 'safety of a prisoner or for the security or good order of the facility.' [63] The DU consists of four separate confinement cells and two special treatment cells, all of which are minimally furnished with adjacent toilet and showering facilities. The unit does not have a corrective services officer present at all times unless a prisoner is on observation.

Depending on their behaviour, prisoners usually progress from S1 to S6 and then to residential. However, again depending on behaviour, a prisoner may go directly to residential from S1 or spend the entire time in prison in one or other of the secure units.

The BWCC has a range of work options and programs for inmates. These are discussed in greater detail elsewhere in this report.

Back to top

Helana Jones Community Correctional Centre/Warwick Women's Work Camp

The HJCCC, an open classification facility for women only, is located at Albion, in inner city Brisbane. The HJCCC opened in 1989, and has a capacity for 38 women, as well as children. The facility consists of a hostel and a house.

The HJCCC hostel accommodates 30 women and regularly has up to six children, sometimes ten, placed with their mothers. The house accommodates eight women. HJCCC accommodates women serving both short and longer term sentences. Women are usually placed at HJCCC after serving time in BWCC or the Numinbah Correctional Centre. HJCCC has a range of work and programs for women, which are discussed in more detail elsewhere in this report.

Women residing in the HJCCC hostel may work outside the facility or may have work responsibilities within it. Women living at the hostel with children aged less than five years are eligible to receive childcare and family welfare benefits. A portion of this money is paid to the hostel to cover living expenses and the remainder is held in trust for the benefit of the child. Children residing at the centre sleep in the same room as their mother. The centre has a fenced play area with several pieces of playground equipment.

The HJCCC house is solely used for up to eight women who are on release–to–work. These women are in paid employment, working for normal wages, a portion of which is paid in rent to the centre. These women are issued with a pass to leave HJCCC and travel to work. Women residing in the house have fewer restrictions than those in the hostel and are able to access weekend leave. They do their own cooking and their daily routines are similar to life outside a correctional institution.

Up to 13 women (without children) residing in the hostel may also live and work at the Warwick Women's Work Camp. This facility, which opened in 1995 within the Warwick Showground, has two residential buildings, one with dormitory sleeping accommodation, kitchen, dining and living areas, and the other consisting of single room donga with an adjoining open air covered living space. Women usually travel to and stay at Warwick for nine days, then return to the HJCCC facility in Albion for five days. At Warwick, women are engaged in a range of community–based activities including building restoration and painting, landscape maintenance and mowing, rodeo and other work.

Back to top

Numinbah Correctional Centre

Numinbah Correctional Centre (NCC) is located in the Numinbah Valley in the Gold Coast hinterland, 100 kilometres south of Brisbane. NCC is an open custody prison for both men and women, situated on an 1800 acre reserve, much of which is a working dairy farm. NCC was built as a correctional centre for male prisoners in 1939 with the addition of a women7#146;s annex in 1998 adjacent to the men's accommodation. Male and female inmates share a number of facilities including the reception and visitors' area, and medical room.

The facility accommodates as many as 104 men in huts, demountables and two houses. Up to 25 female offenders can stay in the women's annex, which has 24 individual rooms each containing two beds and a separate kitchen facility. Unlike the men's areas of the facility, which are totally unfenced, the women's annex is surrounded by a high electric fence erected for the 'safety and well–being of the women inside.'[64]The gates to the women's area remain open during daylight hours, but are shut when the electric fence is activated from 8pm to 6am. Men and women at NCC are confined to designated areas and do not mix.

Women can be transferred to NCC from BWCC and Townsville Correctional Centre, to serve both short and long term sentences. At NCC, they have access to a number of programs, training and work opportunities that are discussed in more detail elsewhere in this report.

Back to top

Townsville Women's Unit

Townsville Correctional Centre (TCC) is a secure facility for men and women, who are held in separate quarters. The Townsville women's unit, which started receiving prisoners in 1988, can house 40 women in secure custody, and 35 women in the residential unit. Initially it had a low/open classification although it now houses medium classification prisoners as well. Children under the age of five can be accommodated with their mothers in all units. At the time of the ADCQ's visit to the facility, there were 49 women in the secure unit (including 24 Indigenous women), and 29 women (including 13 Indigenous women) and three babies in the residential unit.

The TCC women's unit is separated from the men's by an 8–10 metre wide road between two chain wire fences. Hessian material has been attached to large areas of one fence in an attempt to create a visual barrier between the men's and women's units. In spite of this, both visual and aural contact still occurs between the men's side of the prison and the tailor shop in the women's section of the facility.

The women's unit at TCC comprises three residential areas.

The secure women's unit accommodates up to 32 female prisoners with another 24 at the adjacent Julbu unit. Each unit can hold a maximum of 56 women with high, medium, low and open classifications. All women prisoners coming into TCC are at first held in the secure unit, so they can be observed for behavioural and possible addiction assessment. Women progress from the secure unit to the Julbu unit as a reward for appropriate behaviour.

Cells in the secure unit are small and cramped with a shower and basin and bunk beds for two women. There is an open plan living/dining area adjoining the cells. Prisoners have access to an outdoor area, which they share with women who are housed in the Julbu huts. None of the living areas or bedrooms used by prisoners is air–conditioned. During the ADCQ visit, this part of the facility was very hot and cramped, and apart from the Julbu huts, appeared to be run down and worn out.

There are four Julbu huts built in a square, each housing six women, 24 women in total. Inmates have their own reasonably sized bedrooms. Each hut contains two showers and toilets as well as a kitchen so the women can cook their own meals.

While children are allowed to reside with their mother in both the secure and Julbu areas, there are no other facilities for them, such as play equipment, in this part of the women's unit.

The residential women's unit consists of six original old Queensland style houses that have been renovated and extended to accommodate 35 prisoners and their young children. The women do their own cooking in the kitchens within each house. Although built as an open classification facility, due to overcrowding, women who are classified as open/low and medium/secure can now be accommodated in this area of the prison. This has resulted in the construction of a high chain wire electric fence around the perimeter. Open classification women residing in this unit are not strip–searched after returning from a shopping trip or other external visit.[65] However, all female prisoners are strip–searched when entering the secure unit.

Children may reside here during weekend visits with their mothers. A commercial outdoor play gym and slide for children is adjacent to the gazebo and BBQ area in a large garden with shady trees.

Programs and work opportunities available to women in the TCC are discussed elsewhere in this report.

Since the ADCQ visited TCC in December 2004, a new General Manager has made a number of changes to improve conditions for female prisoners. These changes are aimed at eliminating a number of sources of obvious direct discrimination on the basis of sex between female and male prisoners, although the women's access to recreational facilities such as open space on the oval is still inferior to their

In December 2005 the DCS advised the ADCQ that it will be constructing a new women's prison in Townsville. The project has a planned completion date of December 2007. One hundred and fifty beds will be constructed as stage one with a capacity to expand to 200 beds over time. Accommodation will be in both cell and residential style accommodation. The new prison will replace the current infrastructure for women in Townsville.[66] The DCS also advises that the new centre will allow for prisoners' children up to preschool age to be accommodated onsite in two special mothers' units. The visiting area contains a special kindergarten/crèche room. The facility will provide new resources such as program areas, meeting places and court video conferencing capabilities.

Back to top


End notes

29. See ADA s 6–7.

30. See ADA s 10–11.

31. Individuals who have been subjected to unlawful discrimination may seek redress and be compensated by utilising the complaint processes contained within the ADA.

32. DCS, See note 4, 45, table 3.

33. Ibid, table 4.

34. Maximum security classification only applies to male prisoners, and maximum security facilities are contained only within high security facilities for men. The number of maximum security male prisoners is not identified in this table.

35. Queensland Department of Corrective Services, 'Prisoner classification consultation paper' Legislation Review: Corrective Services Act 2000, October 2004.

36. See Commonwealth Office of the Status of Women, 'The health and wellbeing of women in prison: the profile of female prisoners') (2003) 7 Focus on Women; Queensland Department of Corrective Services. Women's Policy Unit, Profile of Female Offenders(2000).

37 . Queensland Department of Corrective Services Women's Policy Unit, See note 36, 22–24.

38. Ibid 25.

39. J Woodrow, 'Mothers Inside, Children Outside', in Roger Shaw(ed) Prisoners Children (1992).

40. M A Farrell, A comparative policy study of incarcerated mothers and their young children in Queensland, NSW, Victoria and England (PhD, 1995) See note 36, 25.

41. DCS, See note 4, 45.

42. Australian Bureau of Statistics, Prisoners in Australia: Summary of Findings (2002).

43. Margaret Cameron, 'Women prisoners and correctional programs' (2001) 194 Australian Institute of Criminology: trends and issues, 1.

44 . Queensland Department of Corrective Services, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women's Policy Unit, Options for Diversion from secure custody for Indigenous Female Offenders (2002) 8.

45. National Prison Census 1999 (ABS) unit record file quoted in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner, Report 2002 (2003).

46. B A Hockings et al, Queensland Women Prisoners' Health Survey (2002).

47. DCS Profile of female offenders, See note 36, 17 – 18.

48. New South Wales Law Reform Commission, People with an Intellectual Disability and the Criminal Justice System (1996).

49. Commonwealth Office of the Status of Women 'The health and wellbeing of women in prison: issues impacting on health and wellbeing' (2003) 8 Focus on Women, 4.

50. K Lewis and Susan C Hayes 'Intellectual functioning of women ex prisoners' (1998) 30(1) Australian Journal of Forensic Sciences.

51. Susan C Hayes Hayes Ability Screening Index (HASI) manual (2000).

52. Susan C Hayes and D McIlwain The Prevalence of Intellectual Disability in the NSW Prison Population: an empirical study (1988).

53. B A Hockings et al, See note 46, 52–53.

54. Ibid, 54.

55. DCS, See note 4, 40.

56. DCS Submission to Women in Prison Review (10 September 2004), table 2.

57. Ibid.

58. A free shuttle bus service which is available to visitors to the facility runs 4 days a week.

59. For example Cornelia Rau was held in BWCC as an immigration detainee for 6 months in 2004. Since the handing down of the Palmer Report in July 2005 the Minister for Corrective Services has stated that immigration detainees would no longer be held in Queensland prisons. (see Section 9.3.2 for details of Cornelia Rau and the Palmer Inquiry.)

60. DCS Submission to Women in Prison Review (10 September 2004),19.

61 .Queensland Department of Corrective Services, 'Accommodation of Children' Department of Corrective Services Procedure — prisoner services (Version 02, 5 September 2002).

62. CSA s 91.

63. CSA s 38.

64. Quoting from notes provided by Manager of Centre to ADCQ at time of our visit.

65. Since the ADCQ representatives visited the facility in December 2004, the new General Manager allows open classification women prisoners to go shopping with their children for food accompanied by a prison officer.

66. DCS Submission to Women in Prison Review (14 December 2005) 9.

Back to top