Department of Corrections and Community Supervision

New York State
Department of Correctional Services
David A. Paterson, Governor
Brian Fischer, Commissioner

Contact: Erik Kriss
Office of Public Information
(518) 457-8182

For immediate release:

June 16, 2008

Singapore Prison Officials Tour WNY Correctional Facilities to Observe Practices

Singapore Prison officials are touring New York State correctional facilities in Western New York today and tomorrow to study general and clinical supervision practices of the New York State Department of Correctional Services.

Charlotte Stephen, Deputy Head of Counseling, and Nur Farha Qaiyishah, Clinical Supervisor and Aftercare Administrator, who work at the headquarters of Singapore Prison Services, toured Wende Correctional Facility in Erie County today and are scheduled to tour Albion and Orleans Correctional Facilities in Orleans County tomorrow.

Ms. Stephen and Ms. Qaiyishah help administer programs for 15,000 inmates in various prison facilities in Singapore including Selarang Park Rehabilitation Center. The two prison officials have been in Buffalo attending a seminar provided by two City University of New York professors on general and clinical supervision and chose to visit DOCS’ facilities for follow-up study and an opportunity to apply the experiences of New York correctional facilities in Singapore prisons.

DOCS Commissioner Brian Fischer said: “New York State’s correctional system has an international reputation for innovation and effectiveness, and I am pleased to share our practices with top prison officials from Singapore. Hopefully we can learn from each another.”

At Wende, a male maximum security facility, the visitors studied the rehabilitation framework and programming utilized for all offenders including those with special needs, such as those in the Regional Medical Unit or in the Mental Health Unit. The visitors toured housing units, Alcohol and Substance Treatment programs, Academic and Vocational Educational programs, Transitional Services programs, the Aggression Replacement Training Program, and the Sex Offender Correctional Treatment Program to observe clinical intervention and treatment, including clinical supervision.

On Tuesday, the visit to Albion, a medium security correctional facility for women, is scheduled to include study of gender-specific programming for female offenders and the services in the Transitional, Intermediate Care and Work Release units.

Next, the visitors are scheduled to tour the 60-bed Reentry Unit at Orleans, a male medium security prison next door to Albion. The unit prepares inmates due to be released back to Erie County by facilitating face-to-face visits with employment counselors, social workers, community agency volunteers and others who will provide a support system for the inmate in the community. The visitors will be able to compare the program with the halfway care stage at Selarang Park.