After some deliberating, the government has ruled out expanding Waikeria prison into National’s proposed “mega prison” which would have around 2500 beds, corrections minister Kelvin Davis has confirmed.
However, that is all they have ruled out for the moment.
So, while there won’t be 2500 beds in the prison, the question of whether the prison will be expanded at all remains.
New Zealand’s prison population is currently at an all time high – around 10 thousand, and the current prisons are beginning to get crowded as the prison population continues to grow.
Without the expanded prison, as New Zealand’s prison population grows, questions will continue to float around about where the prisoners will stay.
Labour is keen on reducing the prison population by 30% within the next 15 years, but for the moment, the continuation of National’s policies here for the moment will see the prison population continue to grow.
So, whether it’s expanding prisons to fit the burgeoning population, or the reduction of the prison population as a whole, a fix will be needed soon.