BUSY Ability is delighted to have partnered with Queensland Corrective Services, SERO4 and The MARA Project to support women who have been incarcerated to reintegrate into the community and live positive lives.

A Queensland Corrective Services Improving Outcomes for Incarcerated Women report states:

Incarcerated women are amongst the most vulnerable people in our society. 87% of women in custody have been victims of child sexual abuse, physical abuse or domestic violence – 66% of whom have been victims of all three types of abuse. 

Jason Shield, CEO of BUSY Ability said, “We identified a gap in reintegration services – helping newly released women to find work – and were keen to work with Queensland Corrective Services and the MARA Project to address this.

Sarah Hanson (Area Manager), whose team work closely with participants said, “We know how important a job is in stopping the cycle of re-incarceration. By starting this process before the women are released we build trust and can shorten the time to find a job – giving them a good start to their new life. Many have completed training and gained useful skills whilst incarcerated and we want to build on these. For example we recently helped a woman who worked in the kitchen at BWCC to secure a kitchenhand job with the potential to become an apprentice chef. This is a win for everyone.

 “We work with women at Brisbane Women’s, Numinbah and Helena Jones Correctional Centres and are starting to do the same at Borallon and Palen Creek with men,” Sarah further stated. 

The QCS Report found women who are in prison can come from lives characterised by poverty, sexual abuse, emotional and physical abuse, domestic violence, substance addiction and lack of education. The dislocation of women from families can have long-term effects on children and be a causal factor in intergenerational reoffending.

Research shows having one parent in prison makes children nine times more likely to become incarcerated themselves. Turning around the life of one incarcerated woman has the potential to create a flow on effect with a much larger impact on the whole of society. 

Jason said ”We want to reduce inter-generational incarceration. To do this we need the support of the community. We are calling on businesses to help us achieve this by offering jobs to support women get a good start.”

For more information on the Ex-Offenders Support Program visit https://busyability.org.au/ex-offenders-employment-support/

MEDIA CONTACT:  Michelle Ryan

           Ph: 0407 169 029
Email: marketing@busyatwork.com.au

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