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An action to detain released prisoners who can not find any other accommodation in self-care units on the grounds of Rimutaka Prison has given rise to concern among parents at nearby schools.

Up to 11 former prisoners could be detained in the former prison training facility, which was renamed Te Korowai, meaning that people are being cared for and cared for.

Earlier this week, the Department of Corrections sent a fact sheet to 21 Upper Hutt schools and provided information to more than 40 child centers in the area about the move.

It recognizes that many of those who go through Te Korowai will have convictions for sexual crimes against children.

Corrections operations director Matire Kupenga-Wanoa said that finding suitable accommodation for child abusers who could no longer be legally detained in prison was one of the main challenges.

"Placing child abusers on prisons, outside the wire, is our last option to house these perpetrators.

"The reality is that they would be homeless without housing, which would pose an unacceptable security risk for communities."

Nearby schools are St Brendan's in Heretaunga and Hutt International Boys & # 39; School, a high school.

Parents outside St. Brendan's School yesterday afternoon were very concerned about the plan.

Among their comments was that parents had to be more vigilant to keep an eye on children in the area, to ensure that they travel in groups and stay safe.

"I am concerned that they are close to two schools … and are likely to be free from prison and in 10 minutes they are in two schools."

Another said: "I understand that people need a place to go.I am not sure if the way the information was distributed was the best way, leave it to the parents to read it and contact them directly on the assumption that there would be a number of community meetings about such a thing. & # 39;

The Corrections department said that the men who would be housed in Te Korowai would be subject to strict conditions, including GPS monitoring, regular meetings with probation staff and restrictions on their living and working arrangements.

There is also a ban on alcohol use, a restriction on who can visit the units and the men there will be monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

But parents from outside the Brenda school yesterday afternoon had a mixed picture of Corrections' ability to keep the community safe.

"Continuing in history, there has certainly been some concern about whether they can control them properly and I'm worried about that," said one of the parents.

"I hope so, but you see cases on the news where people are offended and recidivating and I think they are not always doing well," said another.

Corrections said that currently only two offenders were living in the facility in Te Korowai.

It said that the release of a released prisoner with their conditions was closely managed by their probation officer and that a series of enforcement sanctions were available.

This includes prosecution for violating conditions, which could result in further detention.

– Anne Marie May

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