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Use of Technology in Offender Management

ICPA encourages the use of technology, based on available research, to assist with the management in custody and in the community of offenders and to support their education and skill development. The use of technology can enhance the quality of life for staff and offenders enhance safety and security in prisons and contribute to better public safety. Effective use of technology can further improve collaboration and co-ordination within the criminal justice system.

The following principles for the use of technology in corrections are recommended for consideration by correctional agencies for inclusion in agency policy. They are to:

  • Use and implement advanced technology solutions based on research to optimise the balance between offender control and self-responsibility;
  • Ensure that the use of technology does not replace pro-social interaction between staff and offenders;
  • Use technology and dynamic supervision strategies to monitor offenders in the community where their risk can be reasonably managed as an alternative to custody;
  • Use technology to assist prisoner education and external communication with family and pro-social contacts without jeopardizing the safety and security of staff, victims, offenders or the community;
  • Increase the use of technology to allow prisoners to become more accountable and responsible for their own decision-making and actions;
  • Increase the use of video technology for court appearances, medical diagnosis and treatment, visits, pre-release preparation and in any other relevant areas; and
  • Continually explore opportunities for the use of technology to free up staff for dynamic interventions with offenders on a daily.

ICPA recognizes that countries have different abilities to source and use technology. This should in no way impact the effective delivery of correctional services but at all times assist to improve efficiency and effectiveness. ICPA continues to work with the private sector to develop innovative technological solutions to address issues facing corrections and prisons today.

This founding statement of ICPA was approved by the ICPA Board on 26 May 2015 and ratified by the members of the Corporation on the Annual General Meeting Melbourne 27 October 2015

Image: Singapore Prison Service