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ICPA 2019 Correctional Excellence Awards Winners!

The International Corrections and Prisons Association is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2019 Correctional Excellence Awards Programme – a recognition for their contribution to the development and progress of professional corrections.

Congratulations to the 2019 Winners:

Offender Management and Reintegration Award

Ronnie Armour, Northern Ireland Prison Service, UK – The Staff of Maghaberry Prison

In a report published in 2016 Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Prisons described Maghaberry as the most dangerous prison he had ever seen and indicated that it was a prison in crisis with unsafe and unstable conditions.

In 2018, Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector returned, this time his report indicated that the situation has been transformed as a result of excellent leadership. He was immensely encouraged by the level of progress and commented that inspectors rarely see the sort of progress evident at Maghaberry, and it is to the credit to all those involved that many of the outcomes for men held at the prison are among the best he had seen in this type of prison in recent years. In summary staff and prisoner relationships had transformed. Inspectors described prison staff as motivated and enthusiastic, doing excellent work with the men in their care.

Maghaberry Prison is now managing the same number of prisoners with the same complex needs as it did when they received a very bad report. The difference is it is doing so with fewer staff and reduced financial resources. The prison is now widely viewed as an example of excellence in transformational change.

Management and Staff Training Award

Justice section, Division of operations, UNODC, Austria – Scenario Based E-Learning for Prison and Corrections Officers on the Nelson Mandala Rules

UNODC have embarked upon developing the first ever e-learning course on the UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, also known as “the Nelson Mandela Rules”. The overall objectives were: (i) to live up to the challenge of “concretizing” the meaning of the Mandela Rules and to showcase how they can be applied in practice; (ii) to develop a tool tailored for prison and corrections officers in light of their essential role in making a difference in prisons; (iii) to go beyond “traditional” e-learning and to produce an innovative product which illustrates, as much as possible, the content of the Rules; and (iv) to maximize the global applicability of the course content and to facilitate an easy inclusion of the product into national prison staff training curricula..

Correctional Healthcare Award
Elenore Arend, BC Corrections, Canada
Stephanie Macpherson, BC Corrections, Canada
Dave Friesen, BC Corrections, Canada
Lynn Pelletier, BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services, British Columbia, Canada
Andrew MacFarlane, BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services, British Columbia, Canada
Dr. Nader Sharifi, BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services, British Columbia, Canada
Kim Korf-Uzan, BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services, British Columbia, Canada

Correctional Health Services Transition

Provincial Correctional centres in British Columbia, Canada admit more than 18,000 individuals every year. People with chronic and infectious diseases are overrepresented in the incarcerated population in B.C. Furthermore, about 60 per cent have a diagnosed mental health disorder, substance use disorder, or both. To address this, BC Corrections and the Provincial Health Services Authority partnered to transfer care delivery from contractors under the Ministry of Public Safety and the Solicitor General to the Provincial Health Services Authority under the Ministry of Health.

In the span of just seven months, this enormous project brought together two large and complex organizations, successfully transferred health care services, and significantly improved health and mental health care for individuals in custody. The Correctional Health Services Transition project required legislative and policy changes, infrastructure and capital improvements, a major recruitment drive for health care staff, delicate labour-relations negotiations, staff training, and new administrative structures. It also required commitment and teamwork from leaders in both agencies, and multiple stakeholders.



Community Corrections Award

Department of Children & Youth Affairs, Ireland – The Bail Supervision Scheme

For the Irish Courts, there was no robust community–based intervention which could offer a court both a compliance regime to offset concerns about risk but also provide meaningful intervention to change a child’s chaotic or risky behaviour. The Bail Supervision Scheme pilot offered such an enhanced pre-trial option.

The initiative to provide Bail Supervision Scheme to the court as a community alternative for children who are likely to be detained during remand proceedings, was given a large amount of thought and research by the Department of Children and Youth affairs. Extern, a social justice charity organisation, was chosen for the provision of this service and Multisystemic Therapy (MST) was agreed as the best possible evidence based model of intervention.

The well qualified and experienced team work ‘systemically’ with families through periods of breakdown and chaos. This means that while the child is the focus of the intervention, results are achieved by improving the efficacy of parent or carer control of the child’s behaviour. This initiative is an innovative and unique approach to community sanctions.

Research Award

Larry Motiuk, Correctional Service Canada, Canada

Throughout his career, which included the establishment of a world-renown Research Branch within the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC), Dr. Motiuk has contributed to the development of assessment tools that are widely used in the offender intake process and along the correctional continuum. These tools impact offenders’ risk assessment, security level placement, institutional and community programming recommendations, community placement, and release recommendations.

Dr. Motiuk’s doctoral work and his ongoing research focused on offender intake assessments and post-release re-assessments, and their predictive capabilities with regard to recidivism. His contributions to risk assessment, identification of factors that influence recidivism, and the development of programs and policies grounded in research, have become entrenched within the Correctional Service of Canada’s (CSC) work with offenders. Moreover, as a leading expert on these issues among the international research community, he has influenced practices in correctional systems around the world. He has assisted with the development of programs in correctional environments in international jurisdictions.

Dr. Motiuk has demonstrated that he is an international researcher who is able to effectively bridge the research and practice worlds in a way that results in products and effective impact..

Outstanding Correctional Service Employee Award

Wanini Kireri, Kenya Prisons Service

Before Mrs. Kireri took office as officer in charge at Langata Women Maximum Prison and Shimo La Tewa Maximum Prison, the conditions of imprisonment and treatment of prisoners were terrible. For many staff, respect for human rights in prisons was still seen as a luxury that only rich countries could afford.

Wanini has been a vibrant change-agent, bringing on-board new approaches in prison management as well as building the capacity of staff to ensure they understand why respect for human rights is in their best interest and gain their support in the change process. This has effectively steered the service towards achieving its vision of becoming “a correctional service of excellence in Africa and beyond.” Some of the programmes introduced were Family Visiting Days, Adult Literacy, Talent Shows, Entrepreneurial Skills, Mandela Rules Training.

Perhaps, the most significant achievement of Wanini’s leadership is the inspiration that she gives to the new crop of leaders and officers under her. She opened up the idea of thinking beyond the ordinary and the possibility of making a difference..



Head of Service Award

Milan Ivan, Corps of Prison and Court Guard, Slovak Republic

General Ivan became the Director General of the Corps of Prison and Court Guard (the Slovak Prison Service) in 2014. Since then he has been successful in improving and modernizing the devastating conditions in the Slovak Prison System, especially the technical conditions, the system of pre-trial detention and the situation of the prison staff.

At present the construction of a new prison is being prepared in the framework of a Public-Private Partnership Project as well as the construction of the first Psychiatric Prison Hospital in Slovakia. In relation to prison staff, he not only improved and is still improving their work environment but also adapted their vocational training to European Standards.

Under the leadership of General Ivan, partnerships have been created with various organisations for the implementation of innovative projects and activities supporting effective reintegration of offenders in society. The national project “Chance to Return” focused on an inter-connection of penitentiary and post-penitentiary care. The use of electronic monitoring and better phone system to enhance inmate contact with their family. The implementation E-kiosks, an electronic communication approach for inmates with prison authorities.

The President’s Award

The Council of Europe – The SPACE Projects

The Council of Europe Annual Penal Statistics, better known as SPACE (Statistiques Pénales Annuelles du Conseil de l’Europe) consist in two related projects. SPACE I provides data on imprisonment and penal institutions annually since 1983. SPACE II collects data on non-custodial sanctions and measures since 1992 (annually since 2009).

Data are collected by means of two questionnaires sent every year to the Penitentiary administrations and to the Probation authorities or equivalent bodies. These statistics are provided by a network of national correspondents working at the prison and probation services of the 47 Council of Europe member States. Data collection, validation and processing, which involve a multilevel counterchecking of figures, are undertaken by a team of researchers at the University of Lausanne, Switzerland, led by the distinguished Professor Marcelo Aebi. SPACE is a world-wide known project which is a valuable source of comparative information and data used by international organisations, national authorities, policy makers, practitioners and experts working in the penal field.