26 September 2023

Victoria’s youngsters the best in the country

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Victoria had the lowest rate of young people being supervised in the nation last financial year according to the latest statistics from the Australian Productivity Commission’s Report on Government Services 2022.

Highlighting the results in its Youth Justice Diversion Statement, the Department of Justice and Community Safety outlined its ongoing work to transform the State’s Youth Justice system and announced funding for crime prevention and diversion.

“Youth diversion provides young people with pathways out of the justice system and supports them to address the underlying reasons for offending to help them get their lives back on track,” the Department said.

“Evidence on youth offending shows that, for most young people, early intervention and diversion from the justice system are the most effective approaches to reduce reoffending,” it said.

“The Youth Diversion Statement shows that, in 2020-21, Victoria had the lowest rate of total young people under Youth Justice supervision in the country (7.3 per 10,000 young people aged 10-17).”

The Department said that, over the past five years, the sentenced custodial detention rate for children and young people reduced by 75 per cent from 0.8 in 2017 to 0.2 in 2021.

Welcoming the Diversion Statement, Minister for Youth Justice, Natalie Hutchins said it reinforced the need to address community safety by tackling youth offending issues.

Ms Hutchins said the Statement included funding for a new Crime Prevention program – Youth Engagement Grants – to build on existing programs and provide funding for small multicultural and Aboriginal clubs and community organisations to support young people aged eight to 24 years at the local level.

The Department’s 23-page Diversion: keeping young people out of youth justice to lead successful lives can be accessed at this PS News link.

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