Official Visitor Program

We manage the Official Visitor Program in accordance with the Crimes (Administration of Sentences) Act 1999 and the Children (Detention Centres) Act 1987

What is an Official Visitor?

Official Visitors are independent community members who come from a range of backgrounds.

They visit adult and youth custodial centres to:

  • take enquiries and complaints from inmates and young people
  • work with centre staff to resolve enquiries and complaints from inmates and young people if required
  • escalate issues that cannot be resolved locally
  • monitor the conditions and treatment of inmates and young people

Official Visitors also submit reports which assist us to identify broader issues within the custodial environment.

In 2017 we comenced a Review of the Adminstration of the Official Visitor Program. The Review included looking at relevant legislation and polices, other Official Visitor Programs operating in Australia, a data analysis of population trends, and consultation with Official Visitors, Corrective Services NSW, Youth Justice NSW, and the relevant Ministers.

Review of the Adminstration of the Official Visitor Program  (PDF , 698.3 KB)

How do inmates and young people in custody contact an Official Visitor?

In person 

Inmates and young people can talk to an Official Visitor confidentially when they visit a centre. An Official Visitor will normally attend an adult or youth custodial centre either fortnightly or monthly. In-person visits have been reduced at times due to COVID-19.

Mail

Inmates and young people can confidentially write to:

The Inspector of Custodial Services
Official Visitor Program
PO Box 85
Marrickville
NSW 1475

Members of the public can also email custodialinspector@justice.nsw.gov.au to enquire about how an Official Visitor may be able to assist someone in custody. 

How do I become an Official Visitor?

Official Visitors are appointed in accordance with NSW legislation.

We advertise for new Official Visitors periodically. If you would like to be considered for appointment, or would like further information about the Official Visitor Program please contact the Official Visitor Coordinator at  custodialinspector@justice.nsw.gov.au

COVID-19

The Official Visitor Program continues to operate, although necessary adjustments have been made so that Official Visitors can safely provide support to inmates and detainees. 

Last updated:

16 Jun 2022

We will use your rating to help improve the site.
This field is required
Please don't include personal or financial information here
This field is required
Please don't include personal or financial information here

We acknowledge the traditional owners and custodians of the land on which we work and we pay respect to the Elders, past, present and future.

Top Return to top of page Top