Australia Day honors ‘icing on the cake’ for Corrective Services recipients

Karnet Prison Farm Superintendent Ray Edge and Department of Justice Medical Services Director Dr Joy Rowland have been recognized for their outstanding commitment to improving the lives of those in their care.

Department of Justice Director General Dr Adam Tomison warmly congratulated the recipients. “I’m extremely proud of both recipients of the Australian Corrections Medal,” Dr Tomison said. “As committed professionals and leaders in their field, Ray and Joy are very worthy winners.”

Building partnerships with the mining sector, Mr Edge provides unique training opportunities to prisoners using a simulated mine site at Karnet, enabling many offenders to begin successful careers upon release. One corporate partnership even allows prisoners to undertake fully paid apprenticeships while in custody.

In 2021, Mr Edge established a Memorandum of Understanding with the Departments of Fire and Emergency Services and Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions, which saw 23 offenders complete specialized training. That training allowed the prisoners to provide vital support to WA’s fleet of fixed-wing water bombers during bushfire season.

Since joining the Department as a prison officer in 1995, Mr Edge has held several positions including Superintendent at Banksia Hill Detention Centre, Karnet and Wooroloo Prison Farms, the Special Operations Group and Director of the Professional Standards Division.

He described receiving the Australian Corrections Medal as a great honour. “For a public servant to be recognized in this way is fantastic,” Mr Edge said. “There’s a big emotional investment and a lot of job satisfaction but to be acknowledged is the icing on the cake.”

As the Department’s Director of Medical Services, Dr Rowland oversees the treatment and care of prisoners, supervises medical officers and conducts reviews of prisoners’ medical treatment to ensure effective case management.

Particularly recognized for her contribution to the management of the COVID-19 Pandemic Plan, Dr Rowland received high praise for her ability to navigate the vast changes involved with working on pandemic response in remote and rural settings.

As well as working with the Department’s COVID-19 Taskforce team, Dr Rowland developed invaluable relationships with custodial facilities across Australia to share information on the management of COVID-19 in prison systems.

Dr Rowland provides advice to the Department regarding the health care and management of the broad prison population as well as prisoners with specific needs, including responding to the concerns of prisoners or their families and liaising with external agencies.

“From setting prisoners on a path to employment, to taking care of their complex medical needs, Ray and Joy make outstanding contributions,” Corrective Services Commissioner Mike Reynolds said.

The Australian Corrections Medal is awarded for distinguished service by operational members of an adult civilian correctional service.

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