• Every Indigenous inmate in Victorian youth detention will be interviewed. (AAP)Source: AAP
A task force will speak with 'every Aboriginal child' in Victoria's youth justice system over 18 months.
8 Aug 2018 - 10:20 AM  UPDATED 8 Aug 2018 - 10:22 AM

The cases of Aboriginal children in Victorian detention will be examined by a task force aimed at tackling Indigenous over-representation in the justice system.

The Commissioner for Aboriginal Children and Young People Justin Mohamed will lead the task force looking at the treatment of Indigenous youths in detention and issues including their access to culture.

It will examine the cases of about 250 incarcerated Aboriginal youths over 18 months.

"We're going to speak with every Aboriginal child in youth justice detention centres across Victoria," Mr Mohamed said.

"We're really wanting to get the voices of young people into the report."

Cultural training and support needed for Aboriginal youth in detention
Human rights groups say Indigenous youth in detention in Victoria need more cultural support to reduce re-offending as the Justice Department defends its cultural training for guards.

In 2015/16, 16 per cent of those in the youth justice system identified as Koori despite making up just 1.6 per cent of the general population aged 10 to 18.

Mr Mohamed said it was also important to look at the support Aboriginal children received in the community to help prevent their initial contact with the justice system.

The task force will hear from young people, their communities, police, youth justice workers and the department.

The announcement comes less than a month after a report saying a lack of specialist training for guards and a shortage of Aboriginal liaison officers was eroding detainees' rights to their culture.


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