It is the Government’s intent that the youth prevention and diversion components of the Youth Justice Services (YJS) team will become part of the Department of Communities through Machinery of Government changes. Until this transition occurs, YJS remains part of the Department of Justice.
Youth Justice Services is responsible for the safety, security and rehabilitation of young people in the community. The core objective is to reduce re-offending among young people through:
- programs and services to divert young people away from the criminal justice system
- programs and services for young people on orders in the community
The work of YJS is informed by the principles and functions outlined in the Young Offenders Act 1994.
YJS will ensure young people are cared for, supported and nurtured in the community and leave better equipped to live law abiding, productive lifestyles. This is balanced with a responsibility to community safety.
YJS will always:
- prioritise the safety of the young person and the community
- consider what is in the best interests of the young person and their family
- deliver services to young people that recognise vulnerability, developmental levels, gender, and cultural and religious beliefs and practices
- be informed by evidenced based practice
- deliver a comprehensive model of practice that is informed by:
- the needs of each young person and is age, gender, culturally and linguistically appropriate
- a recognition and understanding that many young people in the justice system have experienced multiple traumas and that rehabilitation and care will
- need to address the trauma’s causes and symptoms
- the identification of protective and risk factors
- communicate clearly and in a timely manner with all key stakeholders
- partner with other agencies and organisations to address complex issues contributing to youth offending in the planning and delivery of services
- engage with Aboriginal people to seek, promote and support culturally competent and Aboriginal-designed and led initiatives that reduce reoffending.