A video of prison guards allegedly abusing a former inmate at a Melbourne venue has emerged as both the Department of Justice and Corrections Victoria struggle to address a series of harrowing testimonies from former staff about the culture in two of Victoria's regional prisons.
The video, which was sent to The Courier and other news outlets late on Wednesday, shows a group of former and current Corrections Victoria staff victimising an intellectually disabled man in a wheelchair.
The transcript is particularly violent.
"I'd love to rape you," an officer is heard to say.
"There is a camera sitting right above my head. You want to go around the corner? Come around the corner; there are no cameras there so I can't be done.
"You don't think you'll ever bump into us c**ts on the outside, do ya?"
"You can stand, you f**kin maggot. You managed to f**kin stand in unit two, didn't ya?"
Another man joins the attack with similar threats.
"Get the f**k out of here or I'll crack your f**kin head you dumb c**t. Go get your mates, come back and I'll rip your f**kin throat out, you piece of shit."
Corrections Victoria has since suspended two staff. The Courier has sent questions about the video to both the Minister for Corrections Ben Carroll and Corrections Victoria, and is awaiting a reply.
It is understood the staff worked at the Melbourne Assessment Prison in Spencer Street.
The video has been released at the same time as the Department of Justice and Community Safety launches a series of campaigns on YouTube and in other media to recruit more prison staff.
The Courier has presented, over the past three weeks, the firsthand accounts of staff who worked in the state's prisons located in the Grampians regions and attendant facilities. We are presenting a final account today, that of Leesa O'Brien, traumatised after being sent in unprepared to control a riot at the Melbourne Remand Centre in 2015, and who resigned in August last year
There are dozens of other staff who have contacted The Courier with stories of bullying, abuse, corrupt behaviour, drug and alcohol use, nepotism and cover-ups. Some are historic, others are current.
What is required, as the release of the video yesterday shows, is a full and transparent investigation into the management of the prison system in Victoria, and a thorough examination of the culture of management and corporate strategy in Corrections Victoria.