ACT Government

The ACT Government first committed to developing a justice reinvestment strategy in 2014. This strategy — now published and being implemented, with an emphasis on reducing rates of recidivism — is available here.

As part of its commitment to JR the ACT Government is funding two JR trials. The first, Yarrabi Bamirr, uses a family-centric support model with Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander families to improve life outcomes and reduce or prevent contact with the justice system. The second aims to reduce the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people on remand through the implementationof a bail support program.

ACT Government Site Updates March – June 2019

  • The ACT Government is working to reduce recidivism by 25 per cent by 2025 through justice reinvestment initiatives that help keep our community safe and help keep more people out of the prison.
  • Like all Australian states and territories, the ACT is also experiencing an increased rate of incarceration, overcrowding and rising over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in our justice system.
  • To-date our nation leading work on justice reinvestment has led to the development of a program of work called Building Communities Not Prisons. The ACT-based commitment to justice reinvestment for those coming in and out of the prison system marks some of the most ambitious justice work underway in Australia.
  • The ACT Government has provided an initial $14.6 million of funding in 2018-19 midyear budget for new and expanded community programs under Building Communities not Prisons.
  • This was the first time an Australian jurisdiction has committed to reinvesting what would otherwise be millions of dollars in funding towards expanding prisons. Instead, these future funds have been directed to programs focussed on rehabilitation, seeing fewer individuals cycle through the justice system through to prison.
  • A further $70.9 million has been reinvested in 2019-20 Budget for Building Communities Not Prisons to bring together strengths-based supports and inclusive pathways that lead to better life outcomes for people cycling in and out of prison.
  • This new investment is a smarter, more cost-effective approach to our justice system that helps keep families together, reduces crime and builds a safer and more secure Canberra community.