A GROUP of young leaders from this year’s National Youth Roundtable are looking to expose shortcomings in the criminal justice system as it relates to prison sentences and their effect upon family members.
The group includes young people personally affected by incarceration, youth workers, youth activists, law students, mental health project officers and one of the youngest police officers in South Australia.
Sebastian De Brennan, a final year Bachelor of Commerce student at the University of Western Sydney, said the group includes members from a variety of locations, adding to its value.
“The sheer diversity and geographical spread of those participating in the project has allowed us to build up a rich picture of what’s going on within prisons,” he said.
The group will present a written report on its findings to the Federal Government on 30 September at Parliament House.
The research involved literature review, visits to Australian prisons, the fielding of surveys and community consultation. “In essence, the aim of the project is to promote some consistency,” De Brennan said.
“While some states and territories seem to have made significant progress in relation to providing family-friendly policies our research would suggest that there are other [prisons] that still have an awful lot to do,” he said.