Law Week 2016 Justice Journeys

Princess

More than 100 students applied to participate in the 2016 Law Week job shadowing program. Forty-six were placed in a variety of roles across the justice sector. They shared their Justice Journeys with us in a range of creative formats including images, video and written content.

Princess, a second year law student at Griffith University believes the best way to broaden her understanding of the justice system is to become immersed in it. The Bachelor of Law student joined four others on a site visit to Numinbah Correctional Centre and compiled this photo diary to share their group experience.

Numinbah Correctional Centre is a low security women’s prison. Located in the Gold Coast hinterland, the centre encourages a self-directed rehabilitation model to prepare prisoners for release to the community or community-based supervision.

With a keen interest in criminal law, I was intrigued to hear that I had been selected to visit a correctional centre and see what life is like on the other side. Although unsure about what to expect, I can say that the visit to Numinbah (Correctional Centre) was a truly eye-opening experience.

As I walked through the centre and talked with Taffy, our chipper and helpful guide for the day, the reality dawned on me that many of these women have not had easy lives. Although I am not trying to justify their actions, I was able to appreciate that many of them are victims of trauma be it physical, sexual or emotional abuse. It made me realise that everyone has a story and sometimes there is a reason why people do the things they do.

A highlight of the day was hearing about the community service projects that these women have been able to assist. Whether it be knitting scarves for the homeless or looking after puppies that have suffered trauma, these prisoners are not just sitting around—they are making a positive difference

I highly commend the work of the Numinbah correctional officers, including Taffy, Sam, Ben and especially Julie—the Deputy General Manager. Although they don’t have all the funds in the world, they truly do their best with what they have. Their brilliant workplace culture of respect, integrity and caring shone through and communicated to me, a well-oiled system. Overall, I am extremely grateful to have had this opportunity to gain a snapshot of what really goes on behind the scenes of our progressive justice system.