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Can ACT prisoners read The-RiotACT.com?

By Skidbladnir 18 January 2010 71

According to this ABC Article, the Alexander Maconochie Cuddleprison has been having trouble with their internet.
Specifically, despite internet access being one of the privilege afforded to prisoners, their chosen filtering solution was still allowing prisoners to send untraceable and anonymous messages, by using news websites and other such facilities.
The Shadow Corrections Minister, Jeremy Hanson, went so far as to question why such access was being allowed at all, as it potentially granted ‘Inappropriate access, such that prisoners could be able to intimidate witnesses, affect the course of their trial by contacting the media, or conduct illegal activities’.

While the Opposition want internet access removed entirely, Labor are taking a more lenient approach, consistent with internet access being deemed a human right in some circles.

Joy Burch’s comment of “We’ve closed the sites we consider to be at risk and that we know of, so they’ve been closed down” makes me think firstly that our Minister for Corrections isn’t aware of exactly how accessing the internet works nor where her authority ends, but secondly that the AMC filtering solution is just using simple blacklisting methods.
The most common downsides to blacklist options are that the blacklist needs to be constantly maintained, and that prisoners are likely to access inappropriate websites faster than they can be blacklisted.
Considering that internet access is apparently an earned privilege, and approved on a case-by-case basis, with potential risks to public safety associated with outgoing communications, hasn’t the Minister for Corrections ever heard of whitelisting instead?

[Ed] This also came in from ADZA

The ABC News Website http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/01/14/2792437.htm reports today that the ACT Opposition is concerned a prisoner at the Canberra jail has been able to send an offensive email to a news organisation. This comes at the time when a needle exchange program is being looked at for the same prison.

What’s going on with jails (gaols if you want to be Australian) these days? There was once a time when you were locked up, that you had your privileges removed. How are the inmates getting needles and drugs in the first place? Why are they able to access the internet?

I guess this is from a “centre” that doesn’t even have the word “jail” in its name, so it comes to me as no surprise.


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Can ACT prisoners read The-RiotACT.com?
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Mshell 4:11 pm 19 Jan 12

Myles Peterson said :

@xtremecrim “…..even in education we still had no access to anything useful…..”

That’s a pity, there’s so much good stuff online now. Could you access Wikipedia?

And are the inmates allowed to play games? Which ones? I used to do raids with a few guys serving time in the States when I was on the warcrack.

Oh, and anything uber nerdy like DnD? Always thought it would be a fascinating exercise in that environment.

I don’t think many people can access wikipedia today unfortionatly :'(

Mysteryman 2:39 pm 19 Jan 12

PBO said :

I would not want them to have it at all, they are prisoners. When someone is a prisoner they should be treated as such. I myself would like to see supervised chain gangs working in the community doing things like repairs, clean-ups, area beautification etc, etc….

The follow on effect would be good for the local community, rates would be lowered as local govenment would not have to spend heaps on private contractors. Offenders would be publicly visible and shamed in the process (Guilt works wonders for repeat offenders). Canberra would be a better place.

Maybe offenders could also reduce their sentences by doing more of this work. I think that it is a waste of taxpayers money to have these folk lazing around a jail all day when they could be put to good use. Why have many thousands of dollars worth of glass artwork when we could have a factory or workshop there?

I think this is one of the most sensible ideas yet. Landscaping, gardening, cleaning up graffiti, maintenance work, etc, etc, would all go a long way towards giving the prisoners something to do, keeping them and their minds active, helping them develop some pride in the city as well as in the work of their hands, and even teaching useful skills that can assist in employment upon release. A hard day’s work does wonders for the mind and body.

miz 1:26 pm 19 Jan 12

It would seem that ACT Corrective Services are pretty naive compared with their counterparts in other jurisdictions.

I would be most concerned to learn that certain prisoners have access to email (and they should bear in mind that most tertiary institution websites give students access to email).

Eg, people charged with, sentenced for, or with a history of, sex offences, stalking/harassment, fraud, etc, should not have access to the internet. Often the most ‘well-behaved’ prisoners are child sex offenders, who can’t wait to get out and start offending again and therefore are at pains to keep a low profile. Ironically, these horrid people are usually trouble-free inmates and therefore need their ‘low risk’ classification manually overridden.

Dilandach 12:51 pm 19 Jan 12

xtremecrim said :

as a former inmate of the AMC the internet access was restricted we had email and only a few sites we could access even in education we still had no access to anything useful…..

Call me crazy but if you wanted unrestricted internet access you could say… oh I dont know, not do things that land you in jail?

Internet access is a privilege not a right. Your life isn’t going to be degraded in any severe from without access to it.

PM 12:24 pm 19 Jan 12

Skidbladnir said :

Pommy bastard said :

“Internet access is a human right”? PC madness at its most rarefied, stop the world I want to get off..

The nation of Estonia declared it a human right in 2004, France’s Constitutional Council interprets it as a basic right, Finland does it too.
Greece has a part of their Constituion which specifically identifies that ‘All persons are entitled to participate in the Information Society. Facilitation of access to electronically handled information, as well as of the production, exchange and diffusion thereof constitutes an obligation of the State’

As much as I think the AMC is a joke, and our Human Rights Act is the more terrible pieces of legislation the ACT has created, the HRA2004 is still a law on the books, and so our government needs to act within its own laws.

Human Rights Act 2004:
16. Freedom of expression
(1) Everyone has the right to hold opinions without interference.
(2) Everyone has the right to freedom of expression. This right includes the freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of borders, whether orally, in writing or in print, by way of art, or in another way chosen by him or her.

Still, I’d suggest some kind of ‘submit your request to access specific websites on a case-by-case basis, and after investigation by JCS IT Services, it may be added to your whitelist’ proposal, instead of blocking access after an incident.

I’m foiled by Estonia, yet again!!

Myles Peterson 11:24 am 19 Jan 12

@xtremecrim “…..even in education we still had no access to anything useful…..”

That’s a pity, there’s so much good stuff online now. Could you access Wikipedia?

And are the inmates allowed to play games? Which ones? I used to do raids with a few guys serving time in the States when I was on the warcrack.

Oh, and anything uber nerdy like DnD? Always thought it would be a fascinating exercise in that environment.

xtremecrim 4:35 pm 26 Feb 10

as a former inmate of the AMC the internet access was restricted we had email and only a few sites we could access even in education we still had no access to anything useful…..

cleo 1:20 am 03 Feb 10

Mordd

I remember the case clearly when a young man was bashed and died, he was put in prison for unpaid parking fines, I suggest you look it up! Instead of ranting and raving about something you haven’t done your homework on!!!

cleo 1:16 am 03 Feb 10

Reid 60#
yes they can if someone breaks an order, that’s one that I know of.

cleo 1:10 am 03 Feb 10

sepi 47#

Spot on, I believe if finds are not paid you loose your licence.

zephyr9673 4:36 pm 28 Jan 10

I’m all for privillages, and skills, somthing for the guards to take away when being locked up isn’t enough of a hint that “YOUR BEING BAD”!

Like I said in a post a bit to controversial, some of the discussions on this board are very bold.

My respect Riotact/ters.

On the subject of conditions, I hear the girls have it very good, the other side of the fence, I have no interest in going back to check the new one out (as a male) not even as an occasional Pri$on rights activist for ABC and Justice Action. By the way, Denis Fergusons association with JA upsets and disgusts me. Child abusers of his nature should never be given the opportunity to re-offend, and JAs successes with this creature have lost my support, there are so many other prisoners worthy of support, child abusers like ferguson are not worth protecting or supporting.

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