On Friday March 27, I announced the Stage 4 lockdown of Wolston Correctional Centre on the advice of Queensland Health and the Chief Health Officer following an officer testing positive for COVID-19.
This lockdown enabled Queensland Health time to do contract tracing on the officer, and to assess the risks posed to officers and prisoners at the centre. It enabled us to limit prisoner interaction should a positive case be identified in the prison.
Today, Queensland Health advised me that all 25 close contacts tested for COVID-19 have tested negative. All officers remain in self-isolation until the 14 day period is complete.
Queensland Health ascertained that prisoners were at low risk of contracting the virus, based on limited nature of their interactions with the officer, and their health has been closely monitored.
On the recommendation of Queensland Health, I have made the decision to lift the Stage 4 total lockdown on Wolston Correctional Centre, and it will revert to Stage 3 restrictions, in line with other Queensland prisons as of tomorrow morning.
This means that the centre remains closed to all visitors, and all officers, health staff and other essential workers will undergo health screening before entering the prison.
Prisoners will return to a structured day, receiving out of cell time for industries, education, and training and recreation time.
Obviously the health and wellbeing of officers and prisoners will be closely monitored going forward, but all advice indicates that COVID-19 is not present in the prison at this time.
We will continue to do everything in our power to keep it out of our prisons, with a strong focus on good hygiene and infection control measures.
I would like to commend the staffing group at Wolston Correctional Centre for working through this challenging event. It would also like to thank Queensland Health for their comprehensive and responsive support during this period.
The health and safety of our officers, their families and the people in our care is an absolute priority, and we are doing everything in our power to keep everyone safe.
Peter Martin APM
Commissioner Queensland Corrective Services