Regional Development Australia (RDA) Illawarra Chair, Eddy De Gabriele, today welcomed the NSW Government’s consultation on a proposed correctional facility at West Dapto, near Kembla Grange.  RDA Illawarra understands that the government is entering into a consultation process, and this approach enables input from the community.

Eddy stated “the correctional facility could provide an economic benefit to the Illawarra region which is beyond the construction and correction officers employment.  We believe that the flow-on economic benefits to small businesses in the region could include sectors such as education and training, hospitality as well as wide-reaching facility management businesses.  We encourage the NSW Government to source local suppliers to provide services to the new correctional facility, should the proposal proceed.”

RDA Illawarra also encourages the Government to provide funding for targeted programs for inmates leaving the prison system to prevent recidivism and encourage rehabilitation.  The inmate population in Australia has increased more rapidly than our population growth.  There is a need for the NSW Government to provide facilities to house the increased number of inmates, as well as provide programs for their rehabilitation.  Correctional facilities have usually been located in non-metropolitan locations in NSW, including Goulburn, Grafton and Bathurst. 

RDA Illawarra is pleased to support the NSW Government, and the Parliamentary Secretary for the Illawarra and South Coast, Gareth Ward MP’s, proposed development of a correctional facility at West Dapto, near Kembla Grange.  The proposed site is largely surrounded by industrial neighbours and has adequate transport infrastructure in place to meet any increased traffic in the area.