30 November 2016: Media Release: New Disability Strategy ignores justice for all

Media release – 30 November 2016

 

The Government’s new Disability Strategy makes great promises but remains lightweight on securing fair outcomes for those with intellectual disabilities who find themselves in the justice system.

IHC is pleased the Strategy has included an outcomes framework for the first time and promises to consult with the sector every two years, but the lack of action in raising the youth justice age to 18 is of concern.

“We have seen too many situations recently where youths with intellectual disabilities are tried as adults and sometimes sent to mainstream prisons, even though there are more appropriate avenues for these situations to be addressed,” says IHC Director of Advocacy, Trish Grant.

“It says very clearly in the Strategy that those with disabilities are to be treated fairly and equitably by the justice system, but we need to see some real commitment from, and better education of, the justice sector, for this to yet be achieved.”

“We are calling on the Government to address this. In the meantime we look forward to working with the Office for Disability Issues to develop the Strategy’s outcome framework and monitor its progress,” Trish says.