Page 4356 - Week 12 - Wednesday, 25 October 2017

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MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! You have had a chance to speak and, if you wanted to have leave, you would be able to speak again. But do not hector across the chamber. Mrs Kikkert has the floor.

Mr Rattenbury: She is shouting at us, Madam Deputy Speaker; come on.

MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: I do not think that there is a standing order about the tone or the volume at which a member presents a speech.

Mr Rattenbury: You are right about that.

MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Right. Mrs Kikkert has the floor.

MRS KIKKERT: Thank you, Madam Deputy Speaker. Sometimes the truth hurts; I completely understand that. If the new data system, CORIS, is able to do this, it is crucial that the government ensure that it is enabled to do so.

I note that the minister has rated the territory’s youth recidivism rates, but I remind this Assembly that, according to the latest research, only tracking those who return to the youth justice system is missing half of the data.

Lastly, I have to express my disappointment that instead of a clear commitment to a plan of action, we have been given what has become the usual for this government whenever any opportunity to really move forward arises. It promised to explore and to talk, talk and explore, with no sense of urgency or willingness to commit to a specific time frame. What a shame. What a missed opportunity. If these amendments pass, please know that I will be holding the government to account to follow through and actually do something on this matter.

I wish to express my appreciation to Andrew Wall and Giulia Jones for their support in this important motion. I am disappointed that we are not clearly committing to an outcome that would have been good for the territory’s children and young people and good for their families and those who worry about them.

Tracking the progression of juvenile offenders into adult corrections within the territory just makes sense. It appears as one of the indicators in the government’s blueprint for youth justice that will allow us to assess whether children and young people are given every possible chance to be successfully reintegrated into the community upon leaving detention. And it appears repeatedly as a recommendation in the latest research regarding how best to measure youth recidivism, which in turn allows us to assess the effectiveness of the interventions in our youth justice system.

As research makes clear, kids get into trouble much more frequently than adults, but thankfully the trouble they get into is often far less serious. Truly effective interventions assist many youth in putting a past of offending behind them. This is an investment worth making. We should never be satisfied that kids in our territory who make a mistake have just started a journey into adult corrections.

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