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 […]

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