Justice Reinvestment in Australia: Professional Association & NGO Publications

Breaking the Prison Cycle

Kate Allman

Law Society of NSW (2016)

After seeing the astounding results of Guthrie’s research, Katrina Hodgkinson, the Cootamundra State Member of Parliament, raised justice reinvestment in a notice of motion in NSW Parliament on 10 May. Hodgkinson has asked the Attorney-General, Gabrielle Upton, to invest part of the $2.3 million that could notionally be saved each year, into a justice reinvestment pilot program for Cowra. The Attorney-General’s Department and Corrective Services NSW (CSNSW) refused to answer the LSJ’s specific questions about whether the idea could become part of criminal justice policy in NSW.

(open access) via Law Society of NSW

Chief Justice: Invest Now to Save Future Generations

Michael Esposito

Law Society of South Australia (2016)

A justice reinvestment program in South Australia could save generations of Indigenous people from a life of crime and imprisonment, according to The Hon Chief Justice Chris Kourakis. Chief Justice Kourakis said while rolling out such a program would be expensive, the long-term benefits would far outweight the costs.

(open access) via Law Society of South Australia

Aboriginal Justice: The True Cost of Aboriginal Incarceration – the Case for Justice Reinvestment

Anna Finizio

Law Society of South Australia (2016)

As a nation, we are struggling to close the gap between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australians in number of key areas, including life expectancy and education. However, an area glaring with disparity is the justice gap, where the overrepresentation of Aboriginal people is truly appalling.

(pay-walled) via Informit

Emerging Developments in Juvenile Justice: The Use of Intervention, Diversion and Rehabilitation to Break the Cycle and Prevent Juvenile Offending

Peter Johnstone (2016)

This paper focuses on developments in juvenile justice that offer alternatives: early intervention, diversion and rehabilitation. The author explains why children should be treated differently in our justice system. He draws on two recent papers. The first by Judge Andrew Becroft, Principal Youth Court Judge, New Zealand, refers to neuroscientific research which demonstrates that there is a range of factors (biological, psychological and social) that make juvenile offenders different from adult offenders. These differences justify unique responses to juvenile crime. The central theme of the second paper by Ms Kelly Richards is that most juveniles grow out of offending and adopt law-abiding lifestyles as they mature.

(pay-walled) via Informit

Justice Reinvestment Program Progressing in Port Adelaide

Robyn Layton

Law Society of South Australia (2017)

After five years of persistent advocacy for a justice reinvestment approach1 to be implemented in South Australia to reduce the over-representation of Aboriginal people in custody, Justice Reinvestment SA (JRSA)has achieved some very positive movement over the last 12 months. An essential starting point which differentiates a justice reinvestment approach from other approaches, is that it is community developed, implemented and owned. This requires a slower process because it is not simply the application of generalised government imposed solutions onto a community. Instead it is a consultative process which allows the community to discuss and develop leadership and governance and then prioritise and implement solutions which are monitored for effectiveness.

(pay-walled) via Informit

Time to Reinvest in Justice

Tiffany Overall (2017)

The Justice Reinvestment Campaign aims to create community awareness of and debate about justice reinvestment as an alternate approach to address youth offending and its potential applicability in Victoria. To identify communities interested in considering a justice reinvestment approach and to build the case for Government to adopt and invest in justice reinvestment policy. The focus of this campaign is on young people coming into contact with the justice system as they are some of Victoria’s most disadvantaged and vulnerable.

Sentencing Contradictions: Mental Illness and the Criminal Justice System

Louis Schetzer and Samantha Sowerwine

Council to Homeless Persons (2014)

It is a disturbing fact that people with a mental illness are over-represented in the criminal justice system. A 2012 study found that 38 per cent of Australian prison entrants had been told they have a mental health disorder. The numbers are even worse for young people, with a 2011 report finding that 87 per cent of young people in custody in NSW had a psychological disorder. Research also consistently identifies a strong relationship between homelessness and mental illness. Research exploring the pathways of people with mental and cognitive impairment into prison indicates that those people with disability, in particular those with complex needs, are significantly more likely to have experienced homelessness than those without disability. The question for policy-makers is how best to manage the complex needs of people with a mental illness within the framework of the criminal justice system and reduce the likelihood of re-offending by addressing the causes of crime.

(pay-walled) via Informit

2014 Sir Ronald Wilson Lecture – Justice Reinvestment: What Difference Could it Make in WA?

Tammy Solonec

Law Society of Western Australia (2014)

The concept of Justice Reinvestment is a framework for the reform of the justice system. The framework, which was developed in the US, is aimed at diverting people from crime in high-risk communities, especially repeat offenders and serves to actually reduce crime as well as the number of people incarcerated. I then noted some of the challenges to implementing it in Australia, including lessons to be learned from the American experience. It should be noted that many of the challenges could be overcome by a state / territory as opposed to a Federal implementation of Justice Reinvestment. This article calls to action to the Western Australian Government to take the lead in implementing Justice Reinvestment on a State level, especially by starting with a trial in a remote community.

(open access) via Law Society of Western Australia

Circuit breakers: How Justice Reinvestment is Reshaping Bourke

Jane Southward

Law Society of NSW (2014)

When we first started talking to the Bourke community in 2013, they told us they wanted to create better lives for children and young people. Part and parcel of that was they wanted a safer community for everybody. “Reducing crime is a win for the whole community, black and white, and what you see happening in Bourke is the service system starting to work in a different way – services for health, education and mental health as well as police collaborating in a way the town hasn’t seen before. Aboriginal community members are having real buy-in and that’s something Bourke should be really proud of.”

(open access) via Just Reinvest NSW