QATSICPP express concern and highlights alternatives regarding proposed Youth Justice reforms.
This week QATSICPP made our submission to the Queensland Government’s Stronger Laws consultation. This consultation is about a range of proposed changes to the Queensland youth justice system (including increasing penalties and building new detention centres), announced in the wake of a number of high profile media stories about youth crime.
As outlined in our submission, QATSICPP’s position is that we want to strengthen responses to our young peoples concerning trauma- based behaviours. We are concerned that the proposed changes will not be effective in increasing community safety and will just lead to more young mob being in custody for longer and getting caught in the cycle of re-offending. In the submission we make a number of recommendations, including:
- The Queensland Government work in genuine partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leaders, elders and community to develop and implement youth justice responses in Queensland, starting with the co-design of a generational plan to reduce the over-representation of First Nations youth in the system, similar to Our Way: A generational strategy for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and families (2017-2037).
- Design and implement a more comprehensive set of responses to prevent and respond to youth offending that are trauma informed and address the core drivers for young people’s behaviour.
- In partnership with First Nations people, develop and implement alternatives to the current model of youth detention in operation in Queensland that are effective in increasing community safety and reducing re-offending.
- Raise Queensland’s Minimum Age of Criminal Responsibility to 14 years of age.
- Develop ongoing mechanisms for children and young people’s voices in the development of systems, services and programs designed for their benefit.