A new paper released today reinforces the fact that Aboriginal young people are significantly over-represented at all stages in the criminal justice system, despite government policy and programs. THE FACTS Young Indigenous people were 31 times as likely to be detained in a juvenile correctional facility as non-Indigenous youth (AIHW 2013). There was a small decline from 2006–07 (when Indigenous juveniles were 28 times more likely to be detained) to 2008 (24 times more likely; Richards & Lyneham 2010), but by 2013, the rate increased to Indigenous juveniles being 31 times more likely to be detained than non-Indigenous youth (AIHW 2013). The number of Indigenous offenders aged between 10 and 19 (based on annual counts of police recorded offences) increased by 5% from 2008–09 to 2010–11, whereas non-Indigenous offenders of the same age decreased by 12% (ABS 2012). Indigenous young people are more likely to have their matters dealt with by the courts and less likely than non-Indigenous youths to receive a caution or the benefits of diversionary responses to offending such as a police referral to a youth justice conference (Snowball 2008). Multiple risk factors have been identified as contributing to this over-representation, including the chronic social and economic disadvantage […]Read More +
Our message is simple
Justice Reinvestment is a smarter, cost-effective approach to criminal justice.
A justice reinvestment model will:
- Address the shameful over representation of Aboriginal young people in custody in NSW
- Give young Aboriginal people a chance at life – not a life in prison
- Empower communities to build their capacity and resilience
- Generate taxpayer savings which can be redirected towards disadvantaged communities where crime is a major issue
We aim to convince the New South Wales Government to adopt a Justice Reinvestment approach to Aboriginal young people and their communities.
We are motivated by some sobering facts:
- In New South Wales, Aboriginal young people make up just 2.2% of the general population, but over half of the detention population.
- Aboriginal young people are also 28 times more likely to be placed in juvenile detention than non-Aboriginal young people.
- The NSW Audit Office reported that the 2011 average daily cost of supervising and caring for juvenile offenders in detention was $652 per person per day or $237,980 annually.
We simply cannot afford NOT to implement a Justice Reinvestment approach. And we cannot afford to lose another generation of Aboriginal people.