The Financial Secretary, Mr John C Tsang, today (August 30) commended the Correctional Services Department (CSD) for winning the trust of the public and providing correctional and rehabilitation services for the community.
Speaking at a passing-out parade at the department's Staff Training Institute, Mr Tsang said, "The department has steadfastly upheld its five core values, namely professionalism, humanity, integrity, discipline and perseverance, and has moved with the times and strived for continuous improvement."
He added, "The rule of law is a core value of Hong Kong and the cornerstone of our success. Our fine tradition of the rule of law has been admired by the international community, and such an achievement is not easy to come by. The building up of this tradition would not have been possible without the commitment and dedication of front-line law enforcement staff and judicial staff as well as the efforts of Hong Kong citizens to preserve the rule of law and observe the law. We have to cherish and uphold this fine tradition to ensure that it will be maintained."
Mr Tsang said that the passing-out members would take up the mission to provide correctional and rehabilitation services for the community, who have high demands on and expectations of law enforcement officers. Correctional officers may have to face harsh or even unreasonable criticism. As law enforcement officers, they have to bear one major principle in mind in all circumstances: endeavour to uphold impartiality, discharge duties in accordance with the law, and rely on facts and evidence in handling problems without being influenced by political factors, personal preference or pressure. They will then be able to demonstrate to the public their professionalism, and fulfil their duties in an objective and impartial manner, he said.
"I trust that, with great perseverance, all passing-out members will be able to win the recognition of the community and the fine tradition of the rule of law will continue," he added.
On planning correctional facilities and formulating work plans, Mr Tsang said he was delighted that the CSD had taken full account of the needs of the community in the process. A right balance has been struck between the interests of stakeholders and those of the community as a whole in order to enhance overall cost-effectiveness and ensure efficient use of public money.
"I am aware that the department has started to revitalise its correctional facilities in a systematic manner in recent years to meet operational needs, and has further enhanced the custodial environment for persons in custody. Some examples include the redevelopment of Lo Wu Correctional Institution, the current partial redevelopment of Tai Lam Centre for Women, the commissioning of the new Urine Sample Collection Centre and the introduction of the first X-ray body scanner into a reception centre," he added.
"All these projects and facilities have fully responded to the expectations of the community to ensure the delivery of better and more professional correctional services. In addition, these also reflect the department's care for its staff and service recipients, the community and the environment."
Recognising the mission and responsibilities of the department, Mr Tsang said that correctional officers play an indispensable role in ensuring public safety and enhancing the overall law and order of the community. He pointed out that even though the public might not have a full understanding of the working environment of the CSD and its specific areas of work, correctional officers are always committed to upholding their core values and performing their duties conscientiously, making important contributions to safeguarding the rule of law and the stability of the community.
The 22 Officers and 86 Assistant Officers II participating in the passing-out ceremony have completed stringent training programmes lasting 26 weeks and 23 weeks respectively. Among them, a top Officer was awarded the Principal's Shield and three Assistant Officers II were awarded the Golden Whistle.
Ends/Friday, August 30, 2013
Issued at HKT 16:39
The Financial Secretary, Mr John C Tsang, addresses the passing-out parade of the Correctional Services Department at its Staff Training Institute today (August 30).
Mr Tsang inspects a contingent of correctional officers at the passing-out parade.
Mr Tsang presents the Best Recruit Award, the Principal's Shield, to Officer Law Lai-wa.
Mr Tsang presents the Best Recruit Award, the Golden Whistle, to Assistant Officer II Ho Hin-chi of Training Course No. 444.
Mr Tsang presents the Best Recruit Award, the Golden Whistle, to Assistant Officer II Hui Yat-kit of Training Course No. 442.
Mr Tsang presents the Best Recruit Award, the Golden Whistle, to Assistant Officer II Chow Po-yi of Training Course No. 443.