Smart Justice for Young People is a broad coalition made up of youth advocates from community legal centres, youth services, peak bodies, and other community organisations interested in the legal and justice issues of young people.
Current focuses include:
- promoting respectful interaction between young people and police,
- calling for independent investigation of complaints by young people of police misconduct,
- ensuring children have equitable access to diversion programs to steer them away from the criminal justice sytem,
- limiting the imposition of fines on disadvantaged children and young people, with any fines reasonably issued being affordable and fair in the way they impact on them,
- building the case for investing money in disadvantaged communities with high crime and imprisonment rates, on initiatives that the community decides will best address underlying causes of youth crime and over time reduce prison rates, and
- critical youth justice issues around high numbers on remand in detention, conditions in youth detention and young people in the adult prison system.
The group is led by Youthlaw, a specialist CBD-based community legal service for up to 25 year olds.
Smart Justice for Young People is especially grateful to the Victoria Legal Services Board, The Kimberley Foundation and Federation of Community Legal Centres for their generous assistance.
Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service Co-operative Ltd.