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In the midst of things: No other department in the canton of Zurich tackles as wide an array of tasks and responsibilities as the Department of Justice and Home Affairs. As the name suggests, it includes those aspects of justice for which the Government Council is responsible: criminal investigations, indictments and the enforcement of sentences and measures. The courts that pass the verdicts are separate authorities. The police in Zurich, which investigates on behalf of the public prosecutors, is under the Department of Security.
In the field of execution of Corrections and Rehabilitation, the Department of Justice and Home Affairs runs several prisons, including Pöschwies, Switzerland’s largest correctional facility. Specialized entities such as the victim counselling service of the canton of Zurich are also part of the Department.
As a contrast to these areas of activity, we are also responsible for what is traditionally called «Home Affairs». It includes the relationship with the municipalities, especially inter-cantonal fiscal equalization aimed at mitigating differences in the financial capacities of Zurich's municipalities. The State Archives, where 1,000 years of Zurich history are stored and preserved, the Commercial Registry Office and the Statistical Office, responsible, amongst other things, for elections and votes, are also part of the Department of Justice and Home Affairs. And various Offices are in charge of topics such as the promotion of culture, gender equality and the integration of the foreign resident population.
Some 1,900 employees work at the Department of Justice and Home Affairs, at the General Secretariat, at 11 different Offices and services and in two affiliated fields. From handymen and prison psychologists to social workers at the probation and corrections services and mathematicians at the Statistical Office to the conservators at the State Archives – the Department of Justice and Home Affairs employs a large variety of experts from different fields.
It is very important to us to be transparent and communicate as openly as possible. The communications department at the General Secretariat deals with questions from the media or helps you contact experts that work for the department. It also supports the Head of Department when she has public appearances.
The media is informed about current issues at press conferences or through press releases.
If you have questions concerning ongoing criminal proceedings, please contact the media department at the Public Prosecutor’s Office of the Canton of Zurich. The head of communications at the Office of Corrections and Rehabilitation can provide answers to questions regarding the execution of penal sentences.
We are happy to help with questions and research on topics related to the Department of Justice and Home Affairs.