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New youth justice strategy should recognise important contribution of community legal centres

Posted September 12, 2018

Queensland's community legal centres play an important role in this state's youth justice system, and we're encouraging government to recognise that important contribution.

The Queensland Government committed to developing a Youth Justice Strategy in the 2018-19 budget. The Strategy will provide a whole of government road map for preventing and responding to youth crime in Queensland.

The Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women will lead the development of the Strategy which aims to:

  • Reduce the number of remanded young people in custody,
  • Reduce reoffending among young people, and
  • Address the over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander young people in the youth justice system.

In our brief contribution to the strategy, we've encouraged the strategy to recognise the valuable contribution community legal centres play in supporting vulnerable young people and their families. In 2017-18, Queensland’s community legal centres provided legal help to 4,533 clients aged 24 and under; over 1,000 of these clients were aged under 18.