Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
Young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have a long history of over-representation in the youth and adult justice systems in Australia (House of Representatives Standing Committee on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs 2011; Johnston 1991).
Although only about 6% of young people aged 10–17 in Australia are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, almost half (49%) of the young people aged 10–17 in detention on an average day in 2020–21 were Indigenous (AIHW 2022). (Note this proportion differs from the nightly average for the June quarter 2022 as it is restricted to the 10–17 age group and is from an earlier period).
Outcome 11 of the National Agreement on Closing the Gap is that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people are not over-represented in the criminal justice system. The target under the National Agreement is to reduce the rate of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people (10–17 years) in detention by 30%, from 31.9 per 10,000 young people on an average day in 2018–19 to 22.3 per 10,000 young people by 2030–31 (Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet 2020).