Justice Reinvestment in Australia

What is Justice Reinvestment?

Justice Reinvestment (JR) is a strategy for reducing the number of people in prison by investing funds drawn from the corrections budget into communities that produce large numbers of prisoners. The term was coined in 2003 in the USA with the idea of redirecting a portion of the tens of billions of dollars America spends on prisons into addressing underlying causes of crime in high-incarceration neighbourhoods. The originators of JR advocated ‘taking a geographic approach to public safety that targets money for programs in education, health, job creation, and job training in low-income communities’, and rebuilding human resources and physical infrastructure —schools, healthcare facilities, parks, and public spaces (Tucker & Cadora 2003: 2). In order to do this, accountability and funds were to be devolved to local authorities, to seek community level solutions to community level problems.

Where is Justice Reinvestment Happening in Australia?



In New South Wales:

Bourke NSW

Cowra NSW

In Queensland:


Doomadgee & Mornington Island

In Northern Territory:


In South Australia:

Port Adelaide

In Western Australia:

Halls Creek

Governments Actively Involved in Justice Reinvestment

Organisations Actively Involved in JR

Organisations with an Interest In and Supporting JR