Page 3316 - Week 07 - Thursday, 1 July 2010

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(1) Has the ACT Government received any feedback from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community or the indigenous young people in Bimberi, about the effectiveness of support programs run from Bimberi, such as the links with the Canberra Institute of Technology, for reducing recidivism and re-engaging these young people with education.

(2) What are the rates of recidivism for young indigenous people in the ACT over the last five years.

Ms Burch: The answer to the member’s question is as follows:

(1) Bimberi Youth Justice Centre (Bimberi) has mechanisms in place in order to receive feedback from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander services and the community. Bimberi staff hold regular stakeholder forums with the Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service (Winnunga), Gugan Gulwan Youth Aboriginal Corporation (Gugan Gulwan) and the Aboriginal Justice Centre. These forums provide an opportunity for services to raise issues and provide comment on the programs provided to young people at Bimberi on an ongoing basis.

Bimberi also has mechanisms in place to receive feedback from young people including through the Official Visitor, the Public Advocate, Case Managers and operational staff.

All young people at Bimberi are required to attend a day program which is designed to deliver on educational and vocational outcomes. Literacy and numeracy skills are emphasised and are being incorporated into a responsive model for delivering vocational opportunities for young people, along with art, music, horticulture and physical education.

These programs include the Canberra Institute of Technology’s sub-Year 10 program and the Access 10 program, as well as Year 12 options through the ACT Department of Education and Training.

Feedback is received from young people attending these programs (through the Murrumbidgee Education and Training Centre – METC) as part of the Individual Learning Plan (ILP) process. The educational goals of young people attending the METC are set out in their ILPs. The ILPs are regularly reviewed in individual meetings between the young people and staff at METC.

The educational and vocational opportunities provided at Bimberi enable those young people to successfully transition back to the community as part of ‘Earn or Learn’ and decrease their likelihood of reoffending.

A range of services are provided to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people in Bimberi to address their needs and reduce their risk of re-offending. These include:

an Indigenous Case Manager/Liaison Officer who provides case management services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people, advice to Bimberi staff on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural issues and liaison with community services;

an individual tutoring program two half days per week for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people with low literacy and numeracy skills;

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