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Rivergum Residential Treatment Centre officially opened

Community Workers  CHANGE

The Minister for Corrections Gayle Tierney officially opened the new 20-bed Rivergum Residential Treatment Centre located next to Hopkins Correctional Centre in Ararat, western Victoria, on Tuesday, 16 October 2018.

The facility will provide a therapeutic treatment option for serious sex and violent offenders who are subject to supervision orders under Victoria’s post-sentence scheme, which applies to offenders who have finished their prison sentences but who continue to pose an unacceptable risk to the community.

Rivergum is designed to enhance community safety by treating serious offenders on supervision orders in a secure but non-punitive therapeutic environment, with a strong focus on treatment intervention and rehabilitation.

Security features include a six-metre high perimeter fence, CCTV in common areas, and doors that can be automatically locked. Residents will also be subject to electronic monitoring.

Residents will take part in behaviour change programs to reduce their risk of reoffending, and will have access to mental health and drug and alcohol services to treat issues that often go together with criminal activity.

This new facility will be staffed by a multi-disciplinary team of around 50 people, including highly qualified clinicians, case managers, case workers and activities coordinators responsible for the management, treatment and supervision of residents.

Rivergum is a key component of the response to the 2015 Harper Review into the management of serious sex offenders in Victoria, which also included expansion of the scheme to include serious violent offenders. The facility will be open to house offenders from Monday, 26 November onwards.