A child’s right to dignity, safety, care and protection doesn’t end at the gate to a youth justice facility. The Northern Territory Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children has highlighted how the abuse of children in youth justice systems can become normalised, routine and hidden from public view.
This abuse isn’t isolated to the Northern Territory. Through the Council of Australian Governments (COAG), Berry Street urges all Australian governments to take immediate action to reform our youth justice systems and to build on the recommendations from the Royal Commission.
We need to reform youth justice systems, ensuring that the abuse of children’s basic needs and rights ends and re-focus on returning children to their families with the support to enable them to thrive, achieve and never return to the system.