By: David Fisher

Waikeria Prison’s high security unit. It is proposed the prison be expanded to take 3000 prisoners, meeting the unexpected boom in prison numbers. Photo / Michael Craig

Prison overcrowding means less work on prisoners’ serious mental health needs who then become “very dangerous” to the public when released, says Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier.

“They will strike,” he has warned.

Boshier said overcrowding was affecting the ability for the Department of Corrections to provide mental health care, rehabilitation and programmes intended to make prisoners functional citizens.

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