28 February 2014


In Victoria the Minister for Disability Services and Reform has announced an extension of the state's electronic tagging regime (i.e. more people to wear 'electronic handcuffs'.

Under the heading 'Improved community safety following review of disability treatment centre' the Minister indicates that
Community safety will be enhanced following a review of the Disability Forensic Assessment and Treatment Services (DFATS) facility in Melbourne.
The review followed an incident last month where a client on escorted leave eluded his escort and allegedly assaulted a woman.
Minister for Disability Services and Reform Mary Wooldridge said that the government has accepted the report’s key recommendation – that electronic monitoring devices are used for clients who are on leave from the facility.
”I have ordered that effective immediately, all new clients accepted into the facility agree that electronic monitoring may be used as part of their treatment and monitoring,” Ms Wooldridge said.
“Current laws do not allow for existing clients to wear electronic monitoring devices without their consent. However, we will amend the legislation to remove this barrier.”
The review also made a number of recommendations that the government is already acting on, including minor capital improvements and staff training. ...
“Electronic monitoring of DFATS clients is another step to build a safer Victoria.”
DFATS is a treatment centre that provides court-ordered support for people with intellectual disability who have committed a crime but have good prospects for rehabilitation. Up to 14 clients are housed at the secure facility. These clients may, as part of their treatment, be permitted to have leave from the facility.