The Commonwealth, State and Territory Attorneys-General have considered the key issues concerning the Commonwealth Government's response to a report on Indigenous youth crime at this month's inaugural meeting of the Standing Council on Law and Justice (SCLJ).
Held in Launceston, Tasmania on 18 November, the country's Attorneys-General considered the recommendations of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs report, Doing Time - Time for Doing: Indigenous Youth in the Criminal Justice System and discussed the key issues outlined by the Commonwealth concerning its response to the report.
Tabled on 20 June, the Doing Time report revealed that Aboriginal youth are 28 more times likely to be incarcerated than non-Aboriginal youth and claimed that the overrepresentation of Indigenous juveniles in jails is worse than it was 20 years ago, when the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody report was first released.
The Standing Committee made 40 recommendations, including accommodation options for Indigenous youth who are granted bail; a national agreement to meet specific justice targets; addressing health issues amongst Aboriginal youth, including hearing impairments and Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder; and the creation of an Indigenous Law and Justice Advisory Capacity body.
At this month's meeting, the SCLJ also addressed organised crime and the implementation of the National Organised Crime Response Plan; the final report of the DNA Evidence Working Group in relation to the use of DNA evidence in criminal proceedings; match-fixing in sport; the national action place to reduce violence against women and their children; the introduction of anti-bullying laws (Brodie's Law) in Victoria; as well as dangerous dog legislative reforms in Victoria and Queensland.
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