After last year’s report on the Bimberi Youth Justice Centre which suggested that there were serious issues with the running of the centre, the ACT Government believes that conditions have been greatly improved after the implementation of over a hundred new recommendations. However, others have not shown complete faith in the changes:
Human Rights Commissioner Helen Watchirs says things have improved at Bimberi.
“I am very happy with the direction the Government is going with,” Dr Watchirs said.
“Some measures have been incredibly positive, such as the after hours bail service, which seems to have an impact on there being less people in remand in Bimberi.”
But Dr Watchirs says she has outstanding concerns about strip searching of detainees before court visits and that accommodation specifically designed for Indigenous detainees is not being used.
The Liberals believe there needs to be a greater focus on “early intervention for families at risk and young people”, and the Greens have voiced concern that a new ‘blueprint’ for youth justice (to be released in August) has not been seen by the expert panel specifically created for youth justice reform.