Justice Health

To improve the lives of young people in youth justice systems in Australia and overseas.

Diagnosing and treating health conditions, providing support to improve health and social outcomes and reduce re-offending, and advocating on their behalf to make this happen will turn lives around.

Most people in Australia’s youth justice system are supervised in the community while serving community-based orders but 16 per cent are placed in detention or remand centres. Compared to their peers, they have a higher prevalence of mental health conditions and suicidal behaviours, more substance abuse disorders, more neurodevelopmental disabilities such as ADHD or autism, and more infectious diseases including sexually transmitted infections.

Screening for health and developmental difficulties while adolescents are in the justice system can identify unmet needs – often for the first time – and tailor evidence-based support to improve health outcomes and reduce re-offending once back in the community.

To make these improvements, we need greater investment in transitional programs and public health services.

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