New Zealand Law Society - Award for Howard League for Penal Reform

Award for Howard League for Penal Reform

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Corrections Minister Judith Collins has presented the New Zealand Howard League for Penal Reform with the Department of Corrections' 2016 Partnership Award.

The award was received by Howard League President Tony Gibbs and Chief Executive Mike Williams.

The Howard League has been supporting prisoners for more than 90 years and Ms Collins says the award recognises the ongoing success of the League's literacy and driver licensing programmes.

"Corrections and the Howard League work closely and effectively together. We want the same things: fewer people in prisons, better rehabilitation and reintegration for offenders."

Nearly 65% of the men and women in prison fall below NCEA level one literacy and numeracy. Since the league's first literacy programme in 2012, 100 men have graduated, becoming competent readers who can read books to their children, take driver tests, and go on to increase their employment prospects. 

In June 2014 Corrections formalised the partnership with the Howard League, signing a three-way agreement with the Ministry of Education to support their work.

Corrections has allocated almost $100,000 to expand the driver licence and literacy programme.

"We are fortunate that the New Zealand Howard League for Penal Reform has put its considerable effort to lifting literacy rates and giving prisoners practical skills that boost their communication skills and confidence," says Ms Collins.

"The Howard League's literacy and driver licence programmes in prisons make a real and lasting difference."

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