Monday, September 18, 2023

Australian State Suspends Human Rights Law to Detain More Children | TOME


Experts Fear ‘Irreversible Harm’ to Children in Queensland After Changes to Justice System Leave More in Detention

In recent years, Queensland has seen a concerning increase in the number of children being detained in the justice system. This alarming trend has been attributed to changes in the state’s justice system, leaving experts worried about the potential long-term consequences for these young individuals.

The changes in question involve a shift towards a more punitive approach, with an emphasis on detention rather than rehabilitation. This has resulted in a significant rise in the number of children being placed in detention centers, where they are exposed to an environment that can have lasting negative effects on their well-being.

One of the main concerns raised by experts is the potential for irreversible harm to be inflicted upon these children. Detention centers are known for their harsh conditions, which can lead to physical and psychological trauma. Studies have shown that prolonged periods of detention can have detrimental effects on a child’s mental health, leading to increased rates of anxiety, depression, and even self-harm.

Furthermore, the lack of access to education and support services within these facilities further exacerbates the problem. Children in detention often miss out on crucial educational opportunities, hindering their chances of successful reintegration into society upon release. Without proper support and guidance, these young individuals are at a higher risk of falling back into a life of crime, perpetuating a vicious cycle of incarceration.

Another issue highlighted by experts is the disproportionate impact on Indigenous children. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth are overrepresented in the justice system, with rates of detention significantly higher than their non-Indigenous counterparts. The changes to the justice system have only worsened this disparity, further marginalizing these already vulnerable children.

To address these concerns, experts are calling for a shift towards a more rehabilitative approach. They argue that investing in early intervention programs and community-based alternatives to detention would be more effective in addressing the underlying causes of juvenile offending. By focusing on prevention and providing support to at-risk children, it is believed that the cycle of incarceration can be broken, leading to better outcomes for both the individuals and society as a whole.

Additionally, experts stress the importance of ensuring that children in detention have access to quality education and support services. By providing them with the necessary tools and opportunities for personal growth, these young individuals can develop the skills needed to reintegrate successfully into society upon release. This not only benefits the individual but also reduces the likelihood of reoffending, ultimately creating safer communities.

In conclusion, the changes to Queensland’s justice system have had a detrimental impact on children, leaving experts concerned about the potential long-term consequences. The punitive approach, focused on detention rather than rehabilitation, has resulted in increased rates of incarceration and exposed these young individuals to harmful conditions. To address this issue, experts are calling for a shift towards a more rehabilitative approach, with a focus on early intervention and community-based alternatives to detention. Additionally, ensuring access to education and support services within detention centers is crucial for the well-being and successful reintegration of these children. By prioritizing the needs of these vulnerable individuals, we can work towards breaking the cycle of incarceration and creating a brighter future for Queensland’s youth.

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