A detention unit to house Victoria’s most dangerous offenders after they have completed their prison sentences has been opened at Barwon Prison.
The new 10-bed Piper Detention Unit is a key part of the Andrews Labor Government’s expanded post-sentence scheme to protect the community from serious criminals who pose a significant risk to the public.
The $21 million unit will house serious sex and violent offenders who have finished their prison terms but are deemed to pose an unacceptable risk of reoffending if released into the community.
Piper also has the flexibility to house convicted terrorists under the Federal Government’s continuing detention scheme.
Serious sex and violent offenders can be detained by the Supreme Court for a maximum period of three years with an option to renew.
The court must be satisfied the offender poses an unacceptable risk of committing a further interpersonal harm offence should they be released, and that risk cannot be managed on a supervision order.
Piper contains 10 individual rooms across four units, ensuring detainees can be separated for safety and security purposes.
Detainees will also have access to education and vocational training to help develop their skills and contribute to their rehabilitation.
Post-sentence detention is a critical part of the Harper Review into serious offenders. Over the last term, the government has invested $392 million to ensure all Harper Review recommendations are implemented.
In early 2018, major legislative reform introduced a new governance model for the post-sentence scheme, which included the establishment of the Post Sentence Authority to oversee the scheme and provision of services to post-sentence offenders.
As noted by Minister for Corrections Ben Carroll
“This is about helping protect Victorians from the most serious sex and violent offenders who pose an unacceptable risk of reoffending – even after they have completed their sentence.”
“These are nation-leading reforms that are about managing our most serious offenders in a safe environment.”