The Families Handbook


A Guide for Families and Friends of Prisoners

The Families Handbook was launched by the Minister for Corrective Services, Phillip Costa MP, on 4th May 2010. The development of this booklet was a joint initiative of Corrective Services NSW and the Community Restorative Centre Inc. (CRC).

The Families Handbook contains information that is useful for people dealing with corrective services and visiting prisoners. It also contains real life stories from people who have had family and friends in prison. There  are contact details for govt and non-government community service providers throughout NSW.

The Families Handbook is free for people with relatives or friends in NSW prisons and NSW community service providers.

The Families Handbook is currently under review - for a copy of the previous version of the handbook please contact a CRC Family Worker on 02 9288 8700.

Getting Out


Your Guide to Surviving on the Outside

This booklet is a guide for ex-prisoners and prisoners who are about to be released.

Freedompresentsmany day-to-day challenges, like finding a place to live, understanding how Centrelink works, organising your money, or getting in touch with your family and friends. These things can put a lot of stress on someone who’s just been released.

Although you may have heard that many prisoners released from custody end up back in prison sooner or later, there are many others who succeed in making a new start. The first few weeks and months are critical. This booklet is here to help you through this time.

Click here to download (PDF 1.03MB)

Planning Your Release - NSW Exit Checklist

This booklet is designed to help you plan for your release. In it you will find a lot of information on things you can do to make the move out of custody and back to the community a bit easier for yourself and your family.

The checklist is designed for you to go through with a Welfare Officer or Services and Programs Officer or other staff at your correctional centre. You can write their names in the inside cover. Ask to use their phones to make calls regarding your release.

The checklist sets out what you need to do:

  • Do this now
  • three months before release
  • four weeks before release
  • one week before release, and
  • on the day of release.

Answer each question in turn. If you answer ‘yes,’ tick the box. No more action is needed; simply go on to the next question. If you answer ‘no,’ what you need to do is set out below the question.

Checklist for Females


Click Here to Download (PDF 400KB)

Checklist for Males


Click Here to Download (PDF 370KB)