The Department of Community Rehabilitation (DCR) celebrated its office relocation with an open house event held on Friday, 5 March 2021.
In response to a steady expansion of services offered since its inception in 2003, DCR now operates from a larger fit-for-purpose space in Apollo House East on Mary Street, George Town.
The facility provides a safe environment for victims of crime and offenders to receive the necessary support they need to take positive steps forward in their lives.
DCR and its clients will now also benefit from being co-located with partner agencies within the building including the Department of Counselling Services and Family Resource Centre.
The Director of DCR, Ms. Lisa Malice welcomed guests which included His Excellency, the Governor, Martyn Roper, the Deputy Governor, Hon. Franz Manderson and the Minister for Home Affairs, Hon. Tara Rivers on a tour of the department’s new facility.
During the tour, guests were shown a closet of donated clothes available to DCR’s clients to wear for job interviews or similar if they do not have something suitable to wear.
In addressing those gathered for the open house, Minister Rivers reflected on the important work the department does for the community.
“Our shared philosophy has been clear. To reduce an individual’s likelihood of reoffending, we must address the underlying issues that have contributed to their offending behaviour and equip them with the necessary tools and skills they require to deal with real life problems appropriately, so that they can make a positive contribution to their families and their community,” she said.
“This government’s investment in new office accommodation for the department is a clear endorsement of the importance of DCR’s work and a direct result of the recognition of the successes that their dedication and commitment has achieved to date,” she continued.
The Deputy Governor shared that overall crime is down 16% compared to last year, and burglaries and robberies were also on a downward trend. He credited the brave men and women of DCR for playing a key role in our crime reduction strategy by assisting persons released from prison to become productive members of the community through the recently introduced Conditional Release programme.
The Deputy Governor also thanked Minister Rivers for increasing the budget of the DCR by 67% during her term in office, which has no doubt fostered the reduction in crime. “Thank you Minister for making the lives of these amazing civil servants better – they have now in turn made the lives of those they serve better as well,” the Deputy Governor remarked.
Focusing on evidence-based practices, DCR aims to promote prosocial thinking patterns and develop skills to self-manage through a cognitive-behavioural approach to rehabilitation.
The department offers specialised services through the Judicial Department, the Prison Service and the Conditional Release Board in critical areas such as female empowerment, domestic violence, victims services, mental health, drug court and intensive supervision.
Clients under their guidance may be supervised through one-on-one sessions or may benefit from cognitive-behavioural and psycho-educational group services such as anger management, men’s non-violence as well as a specific group workshop that focuses on healthy relationships.
“The open house event has been an excellent opportunity for everyone at DCR to proudly showcase the life-changing work we do every day. This new location signifies the growth the department has seen over the years and the importance of offender management, restorative justice, victim empowerment, and offender rehabilitation in our community. We look forward to continuing our work and welcoming partners and clients to our new space,” said the Director of DCR, Lisa Malice.