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Prisoner's rights

Discipline and punishments inside prison

What this chapter covers

  • Breaking the rules
    What happens if you break prison rules, your right to be treated fairly, the powers of Hearing Adjudicators and Visiting Justices’, disciplinary hearings and the consequences of escaping rison
  • Use of force
    When it’s legal to use force against you, the laws about batons, pepper spray and handcuffs and how to make a complaint if unfair force is used
  • Cell confinement and segregation
    The laws that regulate cell confinement and segregation and your rights
  • Searches
    When you can be searched, including strip searches and x-ray searches
  • Drug and alcohol testing
    When you can be required to take a test
  • DNA testing (blood and other bodily samples)
    Police powers to take DNA samples
Next Section | Breaking the rules

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Discipline and punishments inside prison

Where to go for more support

Community Law


Your local Community Law Centre can provide initial free legal advice and information.

Also available as a book

Lag Law: Prisoner's Rights

Lag Law answers heaps of common questions you might have if you’re going to prison, you’re in prison, or you’re getting out of prison. It talks about your rights in prison, and sets out the laws and rules that affect you when you’re put in prison . 1 free copy for people in prison and the whānau of someone in prison. If that’s you, email laglaw@wclc.org.nz for your free copy

Buy Lag Law: Prisoner's Rights

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