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Sayonara Serco

Written By: - Date published: 12:16 pm, December 9th, 2015 - 80 comments
Categories: national, Public Private Partnerships - Tags: , ,

Serco protest Kelvin Davis David Clendon-1

It has been announced that the unfortunate experiment with Serco running Mount Eden Prison is now to end.  From the Herald:

Private prison operator Serco’s contract to run the troubled Mt Eden Corrections Facility will not be renewed.

The company’s contract is up for review, and Corrections chief executive Ray Smith has recommended that it should not be extended beyond next year.

The Herald understands that the Cabinet has now approved Mr Smith’s recommendation.

Serco executives were informed of the decision last night, and staff at the Mt Eden prison are being told this afternoon.

The British stock exchange, where Serco is listed, has also been notified. It shares had already slumped earlier this week because of news of other lost contracts.

It appears that the 25 year Wiri contract will continue.  The granting of such a long term contract needs further investigation.

Congratulations to Kelvin Davis whose work in highlighting what was really happening at ACRP has given the Government no choice but to end the contract.

80 comments on “Sayonara Serco”

  1. Muttonbird 1

    Yes, congratulations to Kelvin Davis and the opposition parties. They did the current government’s job for them here, as they seem to be doing the current government’s job across the board.

    Just yesterday it was left to Labour and the Greens to bring to Amy Adams’ attention the need for Australia to honour their word on deportees right to appeal.

    • Lanthanide 1.1

      RNZ broke the story, not Labour or Greens.

      • Sacha 1.1.1

        I believe you’ll find the Greens unearthed it days before it was reported: https://twitter.com/David_Cormack/status/672319467431444480

        • Lanthanide 1.1.1.1

          The Greens didn’t so much “unearth it” as “spot it on twitter and follow up”, but yeah, looks like they beat RNZ to the punch.

          I based the above on RNZ saying they “received a leaked copy of the agreement”.

          • Muttonbird 1.1.1.1.1

            So you are saying the Greens did the job of the press as well as the government?

            Agreed.

            It’s heartening to see that in the last few months we really do have an effective opposition who are placing extreme pressure on the current government and indeed bypassing them on a number of issues both in dealing direct with foreign states and effecting real change in a defunct prison system.

            As for RNZ, they appear to be guilty of trying to create an appearance of effectiveness despite evidence that others are doing the leg work.

          • Sacha 1.1.1.1.2

            I imagine the Greens would have passed the story to RNZ. Nothing unusual in that.

            • Muttonbird 1.1.1.1.2.1

              Not at all. What is unusual is that there’s no acknowledgement by RNZ of the work the NZ opposition has done in forcing the announcement by Dutton and the effecting of change by the Australian government.

            • Lanthanide 1.1.1.1.2.2

              Spotting something on twitter and following it up is not in the same league as what Kelvin Davis did with the prisons or with the detainees in Australia. Muttonbird mentioned them all together as if they’re the same. They aren’t.

      • Muttonbird 1.1.2

        RNZ are certainly minimising the opposition’s work on this issue, that is for sure. Articles yesterday and today imply it was Adams herself who got tough on Dutton.

        Disappointing.

    • Dont worry.be happy 1.2

      Kelvin’s reaction when Serco want to run the charter schools he is so keen on?

  2. veutoviper 2

    Great!

    And a bit of poke at Judith Collins coincidentally. I find it quite funny that she will be the Minister in charge*when the contract ends.
    According to discussions on Twitter the decision to not renew the Mt Eden contract was made by Cabinet before Collins was announced as Minister of Corrections etc. She also does not take up the position until next week, so no way that anyone can spin that she was directly involved in the decision.

    Re the Wiri 25 contract with Serco, IIRC this was based on Serco also being involved in the build of this new prison; whereas the shorter Mt Eden contract was to run an existing one.

    * assuming she lasts in the position that long ….

    • aerobubble 2.1

      Today at qu time, a backbench nat was giving a patsy question, behind them was Judith making sure everyone knows the TV viewers can read lips. Such a clear undermining of her PM, the old adage about keeping them on the train does not apply to Collins.

  3. bernard 3

    Serco contract will not be renewed.Oravida to take over

  4. Puckish Rogue 4

    Shame he didn’t apply the same standards to the union run prisons but you don’t go against your paymaster so its understandable

  5. Draco T Bastard 5

    Congratulations to Kelvin Davis whose work in highlighting what was really happening at ACRP has given the Government no choice but to end the contract.

    It should have given them no choice but to end the Wiri contract as well. This seems to be a problem that arises when you treat the contracts as individual to the company that holds them.

    • Sacha 5.1

      Problem when govt signs contracts for 25 years too.

    • Tracey 5.2

      Isn’t Wiri a “sifter” prison in terms of types of inmates? I know someone in there now who is “enjoying it”. Living in a house, not in cells and so on. All kinds of factors make it an “easier” proposition from a admin side, compared to Mt Eden.

  6. Northshoredoc 6

    Good riddance, someone should investigate if they can be sacked if they perform to a similar standard at Wiri.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1

      Hear hear. Of course they can be. In fact, they should be, to drive the point home that New Zealand will not be bound by bribes paid at Cabinet Club.

      • northshoredoc 6.1.1

        🙄 Next you’ll be joining in with CV that it’s all part of the big pharma conspiracy.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1.1.1

          Partisan contracts entered into in the face of implacable opposition won’t survive a change of government. Gone by lunchtime. If that isn’t enough of a disincentive they deserve every loss they make.

    • Tracey 6.2

      Wiri is NOT mt Eden. Any comparisson is ill founded.

  7. veutoviper 7

    Thanks to Twitter (Graeme Edgele’s feed) here is the contract with Serco for Wiri Prison.

    https://t.co/yJfQIywbnp

    Part 20 covers Termination. Part 18 and 19 cover Step In and Step Out.

    I don’t have time to read it and comment, so leave it to others.

    • Liberal Realist 7.1

      Thanks for this.

      I’m no lawyer but I interpret the clause below as Corrections can terminate at any time.

      78. Termination for Convenience
      78.1 Department may terminate at any time
      The Department may terminate this Agreement at any time on or before the Expiry Date
      pursuant to this clause 78.
      78.2 Termination Notice
      If the Department wishes to terminate this Agreement under this clause 78, it must give a
      Termination Notice to the Contractor stating:
      (a) that the Department is terminating this Agreement under this clause 78; and
      (b) that this Agreement will terminate on the Termination Date specified in the Termination Notice, which must be a minimum of 60 Business Days after the date of receipt of the notice by the Contractor.

    • Tracey 7.2

      Schedule 23 covers compensation in the event of termination. BUT can’t see it in the document.

  8. savenz 8

    Good riddance. Pity the Natz granted 25 years to Serco at Wiri. Should be an enquiry.

    Also investigation into why Mt Eden got such great reviews by the government – didn’t it lead the prison boards for years? I guess trying to hide murders is not a good look and shipping near dead prisoners off to public prisons to try to escape accountability will eventually be found to be suspicious…..

    But will there be a ‘payout’ from the Natz to Serco and will they try to hide it?

  9. NZJester 9

    What are the odds they put out a new contract for tender and a new party snaps it up. But when you look closer you will just see the same faces re-branded from Serco to the new name, including the owners and management.

  10. Ad 10

    Good riddance.

    The only person with the right to lock me up should be a sworn officer.

  11. Muttonbird 11

    Oh the ironing…

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/291675/axing-serco-will-give-mt-eden-a-'fresh-start

    It was new ideas and a fresh start the Judith Collins appointed Serco was supposed to bring to NZ prisons in the first place.

    Now we are told the organisation they replaced in 2011 will bring a new fresh start.

    Keystone cops…

    • North 11.1

      They don’t need to care what happens at Mt Eden. They’ve already got the principle of private prisons well ensconced. A quarter of a century guaranteed to Serco at Wiri. That’s a generation. For now one more or less private prison in NZ doesn’t really matter. Invoking the principle, can catch up later.

      Anyway, well done Kelvin Davis. Questioning Key’s guts to his face in the corridor at Parliament was something extra. Risky but worked.

      Just today……’apology’. Who looks like he’s stepping backwards here, not in control ? Not Davis. Davis is looking good.

      Well done……#”MY SON” ! (#Key’s Arthur Haley side).

      • Muttonbird 11.1.1

        Can’t help thinking Annette King should have done better than just the fingers to that horrible modern day Josef Mengele, Jonathan Coleman.

        He brought social responsibility and Santa into disrepute by saying that King’s policy is one that no adult believes in.

        That sort of evil shit should have been meat and drink to a decent progressive parliamentary debater.

        They all appeared so chummy today which made me sick to the stomach.

        • Grindlebottom 11.1.1.1

          I don’t like Coleman as Minister of Health but comparing him to Mengele is grossly incorrect & inappropriate MB. I can only assume you haven’t read much about Mengele.

          • Muttonbird 11.1.1.1.1

            Whatever m8, in parliament the PM no less accused the opposition of backing murderers and rapists, ffs.

            I googled Mengele for the spelling. Is that not enough?

            😎

            • Grindlebottom 11.1.1.1.1.1

              Yes he did, the lying bastard, and he finally realised he needed to withdraw and apologise because it was untrue. Comparing Coleman to Josef Mengele is another thing altogether. Coleman hasn’t selected thousands of prisoners for execution in the gas chambers and performed horrendous, senseless & sadistic medical experiments on children and adults without anaesthetic.

              • northshoredoc

                Don’t get upset bud lprent has called me Dr Mengele as well.

              • Muttonbird

                Ok, ok, so Jonathan Coleman isn’t as bad as Josef Mengele.

                As for John Key finally realising he needed to withdraw, well that was a carefully orchestrated bullshit attempt at trying to pull the NZ public back onside after one of the most disgraceful episodes by a prime minister and by a speaker the NZ house has ever seen.

                That was as much of an apology by Key as a root canal. Painful but necessary for survival. He didn’t do it out of the goodness of his heart…

                …he couldn’t have because he doesn’t have one.

              • Colonial Viper

                Our NATs are pretty mild – especially when you compare them to Harper’s bunch in Canada or Cameron’s bunch in the UK. Then there are the Americans…

  12. gsays 12

    so this is what a ‘more efficiently run’ prison looks like.

    a bit of a blood nose for all those devotees of The Market.

    ha ha ha ha…

    the question is now who takes over the running of the prison?

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      Prisons are a moral and financial failure and Labour should realise that a better run prison is still a failure.

  13. b waghorn 13

    http://i.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/74908624/Serco-could-re-pitch-for-Mt-Eden-contract-in-2017-John-Key
    I smell more national fucking lies. They get a nice head line making them selves look tough ,then its business as usual come 2017.

  14. Mike the Savage One 14

    I wish Labour had a similarly firm stand against privatisation and outsourcing across the board, which we get no assurances for. All we get from them and the Greens is verbal comments, but no guarantees. As for Serco, the sooner they are kicked out of this country the better, but we will have them run Mt Eden Prison for another 14 months, and they continue to run a South Auckland Prison, and even are considered a valid contender for other contracts, including running “social services”.

    This has only happened, because Corrections (NOT the Minister) realised, that there is so much shit happening, it would embarrass them too much, and make them legally liable should they continue the contract.

    Apart from that it is NOTHING to celebrate, as this government, and perhaps even an alternative one, will continue outsourcing services, and prisons are just a part of that. They will continue making experiments with mentally ill on benefits, with sick on benefits, with other vulnerable groups, and as Christmas is about us, most will not pay much attention to this and simply continue next year, like the shit government, and listen to the NEW Corrections Minister Collins.

    I see NO reason to celebrate, I must say.

  15. http://www.dontbankonthebomb.com/serco/

    Serco holds a 33.3% share in the joint venture AWE-ML, the company that manages the UK Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE). 3 The other equal partners are Jacobs Engineering and Lockheed Martin. The AWE is responsible for the maintenance of the warheads for the country’s Trident nuclear arsenal. Trident is a submarine-launched, intercontinental ballistic missile system carried by the fleet of Vanguard-class submarines.
    AWE’s involvement with Trident missiles covers the entire life cycle, from initial concept to assessment, design, component manufacture and assembly, in-service support and decommissioning and disposal. 4 AWE-ML has a 25 year-long non-revocable contract to run the AWE that expires in March 2025. 5

    • Mike the Savage One 15.1

      Thanks for reminding us, it is CORPORATE POWER, that rules the world, and that dictates to governments, the “victory” that Kelvin Davies has shown us is just a symbolic one, with insufficient meaning, it is just celebrating something they are not even powerful enough if in government to defeat!

      We must stop the power of corporate business, globally, full stop, and as long as that is not done, all the rest, including measures to address climate change, are a total joke and failure, but most rather dream on, and want to feel good while making endless compromises.

      As long as you drive your cars, as long as you drive your car past Mt Eden Prison and spare NO thought about how it may look inside, and as long as your carbon emissions are not reduced, as due to your consumerist behaviour, NOTHING will change, you are in too large numbers just fooling yourselves.

  16. acrophobic 16

    What a great system free enterprise is. A private company stuffs up, they lose the contract. Now how about all those Corrections run prisons with problems?

    • Gabby 16.1

      I think the employees are probably on .. contracts.

    • Tracey 16.2

      They had to go through written notices first, so it wasn’t just a walk away cos Corrections wanted to, situation. Remember all those notices served on Serco?

      Now we know that the old system and the free enterprise system didn’t work, we ought to be in “new solution” territory” right? But apparently not, we are reverting to a previous failed option.

      • acrophobic 16.2.1

        Perhaps. Private enterprise provides sound solutions in some circumstances, but not in others. Serco seem to be doing a good job at Wiri. I’m wondering if running a remand facility is best left to Corrections?

  17. newsense 17

    Great work Kelvin! Don’t want to go Paddy and count scalps, but don’t let the pressure off. Keep the hits coming Labour…though the reshuffle worries me somewhat…

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