Koori children’s court proves no deterrent to reoffending

Gary Hughes; 30/9/09

The failure of Australia’s first legislated Koori children’s court to reduce indigenous juvenile recidivism rates significantly comes as no surprise, given the disadvantaged backgrounds of the offenders. La Trobe University researcher Allan Borowski, who assessed the court’s effectiveness, found that 60 per cent of juvenile offenders facing Victoria’s Children’s Koori Court were later convicted of further offences, although most of the new offences were either less serious or no more serious than the original crime. A further 13 per cent had new charges still pending when the study ended and 6 per cent had reappeared in court, but had had charges struck out or withdrawn. Just 21 per cent of offenders did not come to the attention of police again. “Given the complexity of the problems of these kids and the backgrounds they come from and their strong disadvantage in health and education and many other different areas, it was a pretty good result,” Professor Borowski said.

See: http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,26143693-5013404,00.html; http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,26144715-2702,00.html; http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,26143692-5013404,00.html; http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,26144719-5013404,00.html; http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,26144724-7583,00.html