The AIJA welcomes CLANT members to this timely Conference. Speakers include the NT AG and the programme feature multidisciplinary presentations

The Australasian Institute of Judicial Administration (AIJA), in collaboration with the Law Society of New South Wales, is proud to present the 2022 AIJA Indigenous Youth Justice Conference to be hosted in Sydney from Saturday 29 to Sunday 30 October 2022.
In Australia, half of the children (aged 10–17) in detention are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people.  They are grossly over-represented, given about 6% of people aged 10–17 in Australia are Indigenous. That means Indigenous youth are roughly 16 times more likely to be in detention than non-Indigenous young people.
In parts of the country such as the Northern Territory where 30% of the population are Aboriginal people, Aboriginal youths make up about 100% of young people in detention. That is despite significant attention being drawn to the issue through the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory which reported in 2017.

Acknowledgement of this serious issue is not a new thing. The AIJA has been attempting to address the issue in its Indigenous justice and youth justice conferences since 2002.

There are many complex contributing factors for the over-representation of Indigenous youth in detention. However, what all of these young people have in common is that they have been through the justice system. That’s why – as judicial officers, court administrators, members of the legal profession, who aspire to excellence in judicial administration –  we cannot ignore this issue.

The conference will examine many of the complex issues associated with Indigenous youth justice and to promote meaningful discussion about ways to improve the situation. We will be guided by the conference’s expert presenters, including elders, community leaders, medical specialists and academics, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander members of the judiciary and legal profession.

“Indigenous justice is a strategic priority area for the AIJA and something I feel strongly about contributing to improvements. I’m confident that the AIJA Indigenous Youth Justice Conference – the first we have been able to hold in-person since 2019 – will inform meaningful conversations about potential ways to help reduce over-representation and improve Indigenous youth justice outcomes.”

The Honourable Justice Jenny Blokland
Australasian Institute of Judicial Administration

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